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Nets yet to make a decision on anthem, but it’s coming

Brooklyn Nets v Boston Celtics Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

In the big sports issue of the day, where do the Nets stand? When the national anthem starts up at Madison Square Garden Tuesday night, will they stand at attention, lock arms or will they kneel, individually or as a team in protest against racism?

“We’re actually going to discuss that, probably after practice today or before shootaround (tomorrow),” said DeMarre Carroll, one of the team’s veteran leaders at Tuesday’s team practice. “We’re definitely going to try to do something collectively.”

In response of recent peaceful national anthem protests, NBA commissioner Adam Silver doubled down on a ruling that mandates all teams in the league to stand for the playing of the anthem. He basically said that if anyone breaks the rule, they could feel the wrath of the league.

So far, no one on the teams that have played preseason games has done anything to warrant a sanction from Silver’s office.

Just last week at Media Day, Jeremy Lin and Spencer Dinwiddie were among the Nets who said the team didn’t know how they were going to deal with the anthem issue.

The Nets, because of their diversity, location, and other intangibles, are in a different position from other clubs. Two of the 20 players on the roster are citizens of Russia and Ghana, respectively. And Brooklyn isn’t Oklahoma City or Charlotte or Atlanta. Just saying. (The Knicks by the way have seven players with foreign passports.)

Kenny Atkinson pointed to the team’s diversity, highlighted ‘unity’, and piggy-backed off of Carroll’s sentiments regarding their upcoming decision. He also said, unlike many others in leadership roles, that he wants his players to talk about it.

“We haven’t come out with a statement, but I think our idea, however our players approach this, I want them to be unified through it,” said Atkinson.

“We have a diverse group of guys. I want them to talk about it. Obviously we want to follow the NBA rules, that’s important to us. I think our guys understand that – they’re going to talk about it. I’m not sure exactly what they’ll do, but they have my support. I think we have a really diverse group that understands, it needs to be a unified message.”

So we will wait to hear, either when they gather for shootaround Tuesday or just before tipoff.