ESPN Host: Athletes May Skip ‘Really Divisive’ White House Trips to See President Trump

The Associated Press
The Associated Press

When Tim Thomas and Tom Brady skipped visits to Barack Obama’s White House, the sports media jeered. With Donald Trump moving to 1600 Pennsylvania Ave., the prospect of champion athletes playing hooky from the obligatory celebration with the president get cheered.

“Now that Donald Trump will be the commander in chief, don’t be surprised when multiple athletes decline the opportunity to visit the White House,” former Indiana Pacer Jalen Rose advised. “He has offended a lot of people. But that’s what happens in politics. It’s not necessarily independent to him, but we can’t sit here and say this has not been one of the most polarizing presidential races for both candidates.”

Though Trump owned the USFL’s New Jersey Generals, hosted the Mike Tyson-Michael Spinks megafight, and put his name on a number of elite golf courses, the president-elect remains unpopular in some sports circles. The reaction to Trump’s victory varied throughout the basketball-shaped basketball world.

President Obama, a White Sox fan, lobbied the Chicago Cubs to accelerate their visit to the capital to allow him to congratulate them. Donald Trump visits Obama on Thursday. The Cleveland Cavaliers do too.

Rose thinks that today might prove the last time in a long time that anything close to a full team makes the trip.

The radio host said about Trump, “The opportunity for him to be in the Oval Office is going to be a magnet for a lot of people, but it’s going to represent something that’s really divisive for a lot more.”


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