Lakers, Clippers Among Teams Forming LA Alliance Group to Promote Social Justice

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistJuly 14, 2020

LOS ANGELES, CA - MARCH 8: Kawhi Leonard #2 of the LA Clippers plays defense while LeBron James #23 of the Los Angeles Lakers handles the ball on March 8, 2020 at STAPLES Center in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2020 NBAE (Photo by Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE via Getty Images)
Andrew D. Bernstein/Getty Images

Eleven sports teams from the Los Angeles area are partnering to launch The ALLIANCE: Los Angeles.

The Los Angeles Lakers released a statement about the project:

"Following the recent protests nationwide, the 11 teams have united to address racial injustice, develop educational opportunities, and support other important issues facing communities of color, particularly Black communities. The 11 teams will advocate for social justice, address disparities and take actions to help end racial inequality. This commitment includes supporting the Play Equity Fund’s social justice movement in communities across greater Los Angeles, and in Orange County amplifying the work of Accelerate Change Together (ACT) Anaheim. These innovative cooperative response models of engagement are aimed to inspire similar actions nationally."

The franchises span both Los Angeles and Anaheim:

  • Anaheim Ducks
  • Los Angeles Angels
  • Los Angeles Chargers
  • Los Angeles Clippers
  • Los Angeles Dodgers
  • Los Angeles Football Club
  • Los Angeles Galaxy
  • Los Angeles Kings
  • Los Angeles Lakers
  • Los Angeles Rams
  • Los Angeles Sparks

As the statement alluded to, the killings of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and Ahmaud Arbery, among others, led Americans to demonstrate against police brutality, systemic racism and social inequality.

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With the NBA preparing to restart its 2019-20 season in Florida, Lakers guard Avery Bradley told ESPN's Malika Andrews and Adrian Wojnarowski he and a coalition of NBA players were looking to get firm commitments from the league about addressing issues connected to the Black community.

The NBA is allowing players to replace their names with one of 29 social justice messages on the back of their jerseys for the first four days of the restart.

MLS is doing something similar with its MLS is Back Tournament in Florida. Players are allowed to write a message on a strip at the bottom of their shirts.

The WNBA also highlighted the steps it's taking to support the Black Lives Matter movement and social justice when it tips off its 2020 season later this month. As one example, players are permitted to wear the name of victims of police brutality and systemic racism.

The ALLIANCE: Los Angeles will work with the Play Equity Fund in L.A and is aiming "to drive investment and impact for social justice through sport" over the next five years.

The groups will stage a symposium on July 22, which will feature members of the 11 organizations, sports commentators and social leaders.

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