James Harden’s Blue lives matter mask from his Rockets’ 1st practice in the NBA Bubble has attracted a lot of criticism in the backdrop of the ‘BLM’ movement.
James Harden has got himself in a pretty big controversy. Harden was spotted wearing a mask that had a “thin blue line” flag which is deemed as a “pro-police” symbol.
The NBA has actively been supporting the Black Lives Matter campaign after the tragic death of George Floyd earlier this year. Part of the campaign is based on police brutality that takes place regularly in the USA.
It looks like Harden unknowingly showed support for the police.
James Harden Blue Lives matter mask
The Houston Rockets posted a photo on their twitter account that showed Harden in the “thin blue line” flag mask with a punisher skull also on the mask. It is associated with ‘Blue Lives Matter’.
— Houston Rockets (@HoustonRockets) July 17, 2020
Even the NBA reposted the same photo.
— NBA (@NBA) July 17, 2020
The thin blue line flag is associated with police supremacy and support for the police. While the Punisher Skull has been used as an unofficial logo by the police. The Punisher is portrayed as an extremely violent vigilante character.
It could that the former MVP was unaware of the meaning of the mask and was just trying to make a fashion statement. If Harden was aware of it, that could mean that he will have to do some damage control and get the fans back on his side.
With so much negative sentiment around police brutality in the US, Harden and his PR team will need to be careful about what the Rocket star wears in the public.
The PR teams of all NBA players will now be on call, as they have to ensure that the NBA stars do not do anything that hurts the sentiments of people, especially at such a fragile time in the country.
Twitter instantly started criticizing Harden for his pro-police stance:-
No wonder James Harden shoots when players had their hands up
— Harry🛩 (@Hernandez81GOAT) July 17, 2020
Russell Westbrook the next time he sees James Harden at practice pic.twitter.com/LFGmMp20GJ
— Rob (40-24) (@Hou5ton4L) July 17, 2020
This certified clown shit. I’ll say it for everybody who scared to. FOH https://t.co/pVRMaL9dPG
— Trey Songz (@TreySongz) July 17, 2020
Although Rapper Young Thug, a friend of Harden’s, stuck up for him by suggesting he didn’t know what the Thin Blue Line imagery meant.
Just so u know James harden is my brada… btw he don’t have internet so he obviously don’t know what’s right or wrong if he posted something that’s against US…but I hate when rappers get in niggas biz like it’s can’t happen to em💥 buster let niggas clear they shit up activist
— Young Thug ひ (@youngthug) July 17, 2020
What’s next for James Harden and Houston Rockets?
Harden arrived late in Orlando as there were rumors of him getting infected with COVID-19. With fellow All-star Russell Westbrook down with the virus and still not in Orlando. It could mean that Harden will have to play an increased role in the seeding games at the Bubble.
The Beard is averaging a league-high 34.4 points, 6.4 rebounds, 7.4 assists so far this season. He will look to take the Rockets as deep into the playoffs as possible.
Also Read: Rockets lineup at Bubble Restart
The Rockets restart their campaign against the Dallas Mavericks on 31st July at the Orlando Bubble.