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  • Ariel Atkins.

  • You know, this was a long conversation.

  • You were here on the court for quite some time talking with other teams about the decision tonight.

  • What were some of the factors you consider going into this?

  • Um, just trying to put everybody in mind, talking to our team and talking to other teams.

  • You wanted everybody to feel like they were supported on understanding that this isn't just about basketball.

  • We aren't just basketball players on.

  • Just because we are basketball players doesn't mean that's our platform.

  • We need to understand that when most of us go home, we still are black in the sense that our families matter.

  • Like we got this little guy right here that we see every day his life matters.

  • He needs to know that he could do what he wants to do whenever he leaves his house.

  • When he grows up, you know, within reason you don't need to go out there crazy, but he matters, and that's what people need to understand.

  • Like we're not just basketball players.

  • And if you think we are, they don't watch this.

  • You're watching the wrong sport because there's so much more than that.

  • We're gonna say what we need to say, and people need to hear that.

  • And if they don't support that, I'm fine with that.

  • At the end of the day, I'm gonna make sure that my family is good in any way that I have to do.

  • And if basketball is not it, God forbid.

  • But that's what it is.

  • We need to understand that these moments are so much more bigger than us, and I really appreciate my team for not only have my back but saying what they feel.

  • It's hard to say that type of stuff in these moments.

  • It's hard to be vulnerable in these moments, but I think like nickel kind of said earlier, if we do this unified as a league, it looks different because his league is close to if not over, 80% of black women.

  • We have cousins, we have brothers, We have sisters, mothers, everyone.

  • We met her and I think that's important.

  • I think people should know that and I'm tired of telling people that I know I matter, You know, we matter.

  • I'm tired of telling people that if you don't know that, you don't think that do you need to recheck it.

  • And if you have a problem with saying black lives matter, you need to check your privilege because, yes, all lives matter, including the black lives we're talking about.

  • Yes, we mattered.

  • And I think that's important.

  • And people need to know that you guys had made a decision with the other teams.

  • And then you went back in the locker room and kind of talked among yourselves.

  • Why was it so important to you guys to not, you know, have peer pressure and to come back out and say this, But then have everybody join you is they knew this matter to your team and they joined you and they were solidified in that decision.

  • How important was that?

  • That feels good because it goes to the point of our team in our league and Unified.

  • I know our team didn't wanna play when they started talking about the business side of things.

  • It kind of changed our mindsets.

  • But when we get down to the human decency of life, you choosing a human or you choose in the game, and when I kind of broke it down to that, it's like think about that the fact that we even have to make those two comparisons.

  • I mean, we got my Isha the whole time.

  • I was always down my dog, always down, like she's going to say what she feels when she feels it, and I think that was important for us to hear.

  • We talked to a few of our other teammates that are here right now, and it was important for us.

  • Toe collectively come up with something that we feel would make a very bold statement on.

  • A lot of people like Oh, you'll be silenced.

  • We black women, We used to people trying to tell us to shut up.

  • We don't care.

  • We're here.

  • We're gonna say We gotta say we're gonna say how we feel as you as you move forward.

  • Now it's It's hard to know what's next.

  • I know not every team is here tonight and so what are the next steps that you will take to have a unified approach moving forward and when and in basketball will resume?

  • I think coming into this bubble we thought we would have more of an opportunity to have everyone unified as ah 144 players or somewhat number around there.

  • I think that will be more of the focus going forward, trying to make sure that we are all in these conversations, literally everyone and finding out ways that we can get to the law.

  • Part of the problem.

  • Can we get district attorneys to make those decisions?

  • Can we get people to see the stories of the women and the men who have been killed and finding ways that use our platform as humans, Period?

  • To show what is happening in this world and to find a way, like you said, call the action, find a way to get this thing moving forward.

  • And how can we put pressure on the people that say they support us, the big supporters and help them help this thing move forward as well?

  • Well, thank you.

  • I I applaud all of you.

  • This is a beautiful, unified statement tonight and we appreciate you talking to us.

  • I know it's not been easy.

  • And thank you so much, ladies.

  • Thank you.

  • Thank you.

Ariel Atkins.

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Ariel Atkins shares message on why the WNBA decided not to play | ESPN

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    林宜悉 posted on 2020/11/10
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