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Sports world responds to conviction of Derek Chauvin: ‘This verdict represents a step toward justice’

NBA commissioner Adam Silver was among the first from the world of sports to offer their thoughts on Tuesday's conviction of Derek Chauvin.
NBA commissioner Adam Silver was among the first from the world of sports to offer their thoughts on Tuesday's conviction of Derek Chauvin.Jae C. Hong/Associated Press

The sports world was quick to react Tuesday following the conviction of Derek Chauvin in the murder of George Floyd. Both athletes and sports leagues took to social media to offer their thoughts.

From National Basketball Players Association executive director Michele Roberts and NBA commissioner Adam Silver:

“George Floyd’s murder was a flash point for how we look at race and justice in our country, and we are pleased that justice appears to have been served. But we also recognize that there is much work to be done and the National Basketball Association and the National Basketball Players Association, together with our newly-formed Social Justice Coalition, will redouble our efforts to advocate for meaningful change in the areas of criminal justice and policing.”

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From Cathy Engelbert, commissioner of the WNBA:

“This past year, we have witnessed traumatizing instances of police brutality that Black Americans disproportionately experience, with the murder of George Floyd at the forefront of the conversation. While this verdict represents a step toward justice, we are reminded that justice is too often not the outcome for people of color. The WNBA/WNBPA Social Justice Council will continue its work to combat injustice and inequality in our country and hope this represents a true turning point for how the effects of systemic racism begin to be addressed. We stand with all those who have felt the deep impact of George Floyd’s death.”

From the Celtics:

“We are grateful for the verdict in the George Floyd murder case, however, we know that today’s justice served is not to be taken for granted, and the Celtics remain steadfast in our commitment to advocating for racial equity and social justice.”

From MLB:

“In the wake of today’s verdict, Major League Baseball hopes to contribute to the healing process by continuing to work with our players, the MLBPA and The Players Alliance to advance the values of social justice, equality, diversity and inclusion.”

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From the NFL:

“Today’s outcome in the Derek Chauvin trial in Minneapolis does not undo the loss of life. Mr. George Floyd should be here with us today. Our hearts remain with the Floyd family, and we understand the pain, anger and frustration does not go away even when justice is delivered.

“Important, even as we identify reasons for hope, we must continue to help move our society toward a more equal and just tomorrow. We are proud to partner with NFL players and clubs and remain committed to do the important work needed to make positive change in our society.”

From the Minnesota Vikings:

“The past year following George Floyd’s death has been extremely painful for the Minnesota community, particularly for the State’s Black residents. While today’s decision does not minimize the anguish or solve the intolerable issues of racism and hate, we hope it can mark the beginning of community healing.

“Now, more than ever, it is crucial to respectfully listen, communicate and engage in order for us to move toward an equitable society. We must address the unacceptable continued violence and hate toward People of Color and commit to using our individual and collective voices to end the divisiveness and racial injustice.

“Our work is just beginning. Our commitment is unwavering. As an organization, we will build upon the foundation we have already established in the following critical areas: reducing socioeconomic disparities, implementing educational curriculum on racism and Black history, and advocating for law enforcement and criminal justice reform. We will continue to be agents for positive, transformational and sustainable change.”

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The Minnesota Timberwolves and Lynx issued a joint message:

“One year ago, George Floyd was murdered, causing unimaginable pain and trauma for his family, the Minneapolis community, and communities across the nation. Our deepest thoughts of been with the Floyd family since this unjust tragedy. Throughout history, racial and social inequalities have been ingrained in our society. We are hopeful that today’s decision will serve as a step forward, but it does not ease the physical and emotional pain that continues in an environment where systemic racism exists.

“To our BIPOC community, the Timberwolves and Lynx remain committed to influencing change, promoting impactful action, and using our platform to help heal and unite in pursuit of liberty and justice FOR ALL.”

From MLBPA executive director Tony Clark:

“In the wake of today’s verdict in Minnesota, the Players Association will continue its work as a resource and advocate for all of our members who have been affected by recent tragic events, including those who wish to express themselves publicly or privately on social justice issues. We will also continue to work with Major League Baseball and local authorities to ensure the safety of Players, their families, and the communities we call home. We all remain committed to the difficult work of healing and advancing the cause of civil rights and equal justice under the law.”

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From the NHL:

“While we hope the end of the trial offers a chance for healing, we remain committed to actively engaging in the movement for equality and we invite our fans to join us in supporting systemic change.”




Christopher Price can be reached at christopher.price@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter at cpriceglobe.