The National Basketball Association and the NBA Players’ Association announced that all three playoff games scheduled for Wednesday were postponed.
The Milwaukee Bucks were the first team to decide not to take the floor for their Game 5 against the Orlando Magic. Shortly after, the games between Houston Rockets and Oklahoma City Thunder and Los Angeles Lakers and Portland Trailblazers were also postponed.
The games will be rescheduled, according to the association.
According to ESPN Senior NBA Insider Adrian Wojnarowski, team owners and front offices “didn’t see this wave of player boycotts” coming on Wednesday.
“Hours ago, they all expected to be playing these games tonight,” Wojnarowski posted to Twitter Wednesday afternoon. “This is a pivot point for the NBA and professional sports in North America.”
The WNBA canceled its games, and the games between the Milwaukee Brewers and Cincinnati Reds, Seattle Mariners and San Diego Padres, as well as the Dodgers and San Francisco Giants, were also canceled.
The boycotts come in the wake of 29-year-old Jacob Blake, a black man, being shot from behind seven times by a police officer in Kenosha, Wis. on Sunday. Police were attempting to arrest Blake during a domestic dispute, during which Blake was tased and scuffled briefly with officers.
There have been conflicting reports as to whether Blake was armed with a knife during the incident. He reportedly has been left paralyzed from the waist down, according to the Blake family attorney, Benjamin Crump.
— Mitchell White