Chris Paul, Udonis Haslem Stood Up To Pat Beverley After He Disrespected Michele Roberts
Two NBA players stood up to Patrick Beverley on Wednesday night after he repeatedly disrespected National Basketball Players Association (NBPA) president Michele Roberts.
Those two players? Chris Paul of the Oklahoma City Thunder and Udonis Haslem of the Miami Heat.
This past Wednesday, the Milwaukee Bucks initiated what amounted to a league-wide strike when they opted not to play their Game 5 showdown against the Orlando Magic.
The move was made in response to the police shooting of Jacob Blake, a 29-year-old black man who was ultimately left paralyzed from the waist down.
Two other games scheduled for the same day – the Houston Rockets vs OKC Thunder and Los Angeles Lakers vs Portland Trail Blazers – were called off shortly thereafter.
That evening, all of the players remaining in the NBA bubble gathered for an all-hands meeting where they planned to determine whether or not to call of the remainder of the season. The conversations throughout were raw, honest and often filled with emotion.
Respected veterans including LeBron James, Kawhi Leonard, Andre Iguodala and Paul all made their voices heard. Head coaches like Doc Rivers made it a point to speak out as well.
With the entire season on the line, two veterans stepped up. https://t.co/pP7GDrjLu0
— Game 7 (@game7__) August 27, 2020
At one point in the meeting, Roberts took the floor to describe the financial implications of going on strike and canceling the rest of the outings scheduled this season.
That is when Beverley, a very outspoken guard for the Los Angeles Clippers, interrupted her and told her he disagreed with her points. When Roberts tried to reiterate them, the 32-year-old interrupted her again.
When Roberts asked if she could have the floor to finish her thoughts, Beverley fired back with a response that left many in the room stunned.
“No, I pay your salary,” he said.
During yesterday’s meeting, Patrick Beverley interrupted Michelle Roberts, when she asked if she could continue speaking, Beverley responded;
“No, I pay your salary.”
— Hoop Central (@TheHoopCentral) August 28, 2020
At that point, Paul and Haslem immediately stepped in and informed him that disrespect of Roberts would not be tolerated under any circumstances.
Roberts, who took over as the NBPA head in 2014, is the first woman to lead a major professional sports union in North America.
A resolution ultimately would not be reached on Wednesday night, after a portion of the players expressed a desire to call off the rest of the season and another segment signaled that they wanted to keep playing.
On Thursday morning, however, that changed. Representatives from each team met once more, and at that point a unanimous decision was made to continue with the season.