The WNBA will honor Breonna Taylor the entire season.
Prior to tipoff, Layshia Clarendon and Breanna Stewart dedicated the WNBA season to Taylor. The New York Liberty and Seattle Storm then held a 26-second long moment of silence to honor Taylor.
WNBA players observe a 26-second moment of silence for Breonna Taylor before tip off
They're all wearing Breonna Taylor's name on the back of their jerseys pic.twitter.com/sRPw7IFdEI
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) July 25, 2020
Clarendon spoke first, saying the WNBA players will be “a voice for the voiceless.”
“We are dedicating this season to Breonna Taylor, an outstanding EMT who was murdered over 130 days ago in her home. Breonna Taylor was dedicated and committed to uplifting everyone around her. We are also dedicating this season to Say Her Name campaign, a campaign committed to saying the names and fighting for justice for Black women, Black women who are so often forgotten in this fight for justice, who do not have people marching in the streets for them. We will say her name.
“Sandra Bland. Atatiana Jefferson. Dominique ‘Rem’mie’ Fells. And Breonna Taylor. We will be a voice for the voiceless.”
Stewart spoke next, saying the players would take a 26-second long moment of silence, “the age [Taylor] was when she was killed.”
Taylor, a Black ER technician, was shot and killed by Louisville police in March while she was asleep in her apartment. Protests have called for the officers involved in the shooting to be arrested. One officer was fired. The other two remain on the force.
Both teams walked off court before national anthem played
The Liberty and Storm walked off the court as the national anthem played as part of the social justice movement. pic.twitter.com/paSm1nOGex
— Yahoo Sports (@YahooSports) July 25, 2020
Prior to tipoff, both the Liberty and Storm remained in the locker room as the national anthem played.
WNBA teams have engaged in similar forms of protest over the years, including kneeling and linking arms during the anthem.
Liberty dedicates lineup to Breonna Taylor
Away from the court, the Liberty used their starting lineup as a way to honor Taylor.
— New York Liberty (@nyliberty) July 25, 2020
In the team’s tweet announcing the lineup, every single player is listed as “Breonna Taylor.” A picture of Taylor was also included in the graphic.
The Liberty and Storm kicked off the WNBA on Saturday. Prior to the game, the WNBA debuted its court for the season, which features two Black Lives Matter decals on the floor.
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