Colby Covington has never been one to hold his tongue when other people express their opinions. On Tuesday, he ripped into the Dallas Mavericks and their owner, Mark Cuban, as well as the NBA, after the Mavericks had refused to play the national anthem before games all season.
The issue only became a hot topic this week when the Mavericks began welcoming fans back to its games… sans the tradition of playing the national anthem.
Cuban has been vocal about people complaining about not playing the national anthem for quite some time. Over the summer, he tweeted, “The National Anthem Police in this country are out of control. If you want to complain, complain to your boss and ask why they don’t play the National Anthem every day before you start work.”
The recent focus on the issue led Covington to blast Cuban, the Mavericks, and the NBA.
“Can’t play The National Anthem and can’t say FREE Hong Kong, but you could customize the back of your official @DallasMavs jersey ALL summer long to say: ‘KillCops.’ @MarkCuban and the @NBA are absolute trash.”
Covington said nothing of the UFC’s practice of not playing the national anthem at any of its events.
The Mavericks situation changed on Wednesday, however, after the NBA issued a statement saying that the playing of the national anthem would be required at all NBA games.
“With NBA teams now in the process of welcoming fans back into their arenas, all teams will play the national anthem in keeping with longstanding league policy,” said NBA Chief Communications Officer Mike Bass.
The Mavericks have agree to begin playing the anthem again, though Cuban issued the following statement on Wednesday:
“We respect and always have respected the passion people have for the anthem and our country. I have always stood for the anthem with the hand over my heart — no matter where I hear it played. But we also hear the voices of those who do not feel the anthem represents them. We feel they also need to be respected and heard, because they have not been heard. The hope is that those who feel passionate about the anthem being played will be just as passionate in listening to those who do not feel it represents them.”