Jim Brown, Ray Lewis Comment on Meeting President-Elect Donald Trump

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistDecember 14, 2016

NFL legends, Jim Brown and Ray Lewis(C) and Rev. Darrell Scott(R), senior pastor of the New Spirit Revival Center in Cleveland Heights speak to the media after meetings with US President-elect Donald Trump at Trump Tower in New York December 13, 2016. / AFP / TIMOTHY A. CLARY        (Photo credit should read TIMOTHY A. CLARY/AFP/Getty Images)
TIMOTHY A. CLARY/Getty Images

NFL greats Ray Lewis and Jim Brown met with President-elect Donald Trump on Tuesday, per TMZ Sports, and had positive things to say in the aftermath.

"For us as a black community, for Mr. Trump to step up…that's everything," Lewis said, per Steven Portnoy of CBS News. 

Lewis also tweeted about his encounter:

CNN Wire (h/t Fox 8 Cleveland) noted Brown met with Trump to discuss issues facing the African-American community. In an interview with CNN's Brooke Baldwin (h/t Fox 8 Cleveland), Brown said: "I fell in love with him because he really talks about helping African-American, black people, and that's why I'm here."

CNN Wire noted Brown—who has been an activist for minorities throughout his life—voted for Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton in November's election but was pleased with what Trump had to say.

While Lewis and Brown were impressed by Trump, the president-elect has been a controversial figure since well before he won the election over Clinton. There have been plenty of nationwide protests after he won with a campaign that was littered with divisive rhetoric, and the split and racial issues spilled into the sports world.

Mike Freeman of Bleacher Report reported some anonymous black Buffalo Bills players took issue with head coach Rex Ryan publicly supporting Trump. Freeman also referenced a straw poll of 43 NFL players before the election, and all 21 white players said they planned on voting for Trump, while 20 of the 22 black players planned on voting for Clinton.

Marc Stein and Zach Lowe of ESPN.com reported some NBA teams wouldn't stay at Trump-branded hotels on the road, and the Associated Press (via Newsday) noted LeBron James and some of his Cleveland Cavaliers teammates wouldn't stay at the Trump Soho for a road game against the New York Knicks.

Elsewhere, NBA coaches such as Steve Kerr, Gregg Popovich and Stan Van Gundy criticized the messages of misogyny and racism during parts of Trump's campaign.

While Trump has been a controversial figure in the sports world, Brown and Lewis likely looked to find some common ground with the president-elect during their meetings Tuesday and apparently came away impressed.

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