LeBron James leading pushback against Kyrie Irving’s NBA restart stand

Kyrie Irving’s stance against the NBA, which has been shutdown since March because of the coronavirus pandemic, resuming play amid a social justice movement has significant support among his peers. More than 80 players joined the Nets star on a conference call Friday night, with several sharing the opinion that the league — scheduled to restart on July 30 in Orlando — shouldn’t distract from the nationwide reforms being fought for by the “Black Lives Matter” cause.

But change isn’t confined to one path. Some players disagree with Irving, arguing that four months of daily media coverage fed to millions of sports-starved fans can be an even stronger vehicle for their message.

The sport’s strongest voice and most recognizable face, LeBron James, is reportedly leading the fight in favor of finishing the season. Earlier in the week, James announced the formation of a voting rights group, along with Hawks guard Trae Young, in hopes of increasing black voter turnout and ending black voter suppression. James reportedly was not on the Friday call. The Athletic reported he wants to continue to play while also being a voice for social change.