Aaron Donald, Jaylen Brown Leave Kanye West's Donda Sports, Denounce Antisemitism

Erin WalshOctober 25, 2022

INGLEWOOD, CALIFORNIA - OCTOBER 09: Aaron Donald #99 of the Los Angeles Rams looks on during the national anthem prior to an NFL football game against the Dallas Cowboys at SoFi Stadium on October 09, 2022 in Inglewood, California. (Photo by Michael Owens/Getty Images)
Michael Owens/Getty Images

Los Angeles Rams star Aaron Donald announced Tuesday that he is parting ways with Kanye West's Donda Sports marketing agency, denouncing West's "recent comments and displays of hate and antisemitism."

AD_99 @AaronDonald97

<a href="https://t.co/xpWAPpqL2f">pic.twitter.com/xpWAPpqL2f</a>

Minutes later, Boston Celtics star Jaylen Brown announced that he is also parting ways with Donda Sports, writing that he will "always continue to stand strongly against any antisemitism, hate speech, misrepresentation, and oppressive rhetoric of any kind."

Jaylen Brown @FCHWPO

<a href="https://t.co/v1eCAuC4cz">pic.twitter.com/v1eCAuC4cz</a>

On Oct. 9, West, who legally changed his name to Ye, tweeted that he would "go death con 3 on Jewish people." He claimed that it was not antisemitic because "black people are actually Jew also." The tweet was removed and Twitter locked his account.

The since-deleted tweet was one of a number of troubling actions the Grammy-winning rapper has taken over the last month.

West was criticized for wearing a "White Lives Matter" T-shirt at his fashion show in Paris—the phrase was coined as "a racist response to the civil rights movement Black Lives Matter"—and also posted a screenshot of a conversation he had with Sean "Diddy" Combs on Instagram in which he made antisemitic remarks.

West also filmed an appearance on The Shop, however, SpringHill Company CEO Maverick Carter said the company had decided to pull the episode after West used the show "to reiterate more hate speech and extremely dangerous stereotypes."

Donda Sports, West's marketing agency, signed Donald and Brown in May. The deals didn't impact their representation, only their marketing contracts and off-field and off-court ventures.

Donald was the only known NFL player to have signed with Donda Sports, though former NFL wide receiver Antonio Brown was named president of the organization in February. Jaylen Brown was also the only known NBA player to have teamed up with Donda Sports.

Brown's decision to part with Donda Sports comes after he said in an interview with Gary Washburn of The Boston Globe on Monday that he was going to stay with the organization:

"The reason why I signed with Donda Sports, it represented education, it represented activism, disruption. It represented single-parent households, and a lot more people are involved in something like that.

"A lot of people that I work with, work with their families, build love and respect for, spending time in the summer. A lot of people involved. That’s what the organization from my vantage point from Donda Sports represented."

Donald had not commented on the situation until he announced his decision to part ways with the organization.

A number of businesses have also cut ties with West over the last week, including Adidas, which produced his Yeezy sneakers, Vogue and Balenciaga. On Tuesday, Foot Locker announced it would no longer "be supporting any future Yeezy product drops" and it had told "retail operators to pull any existing product from our shelves and digital sites."