Lakers wear caps to keep focus on Taylor caseon August 19, 2020 at 4:01 pm

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — The Los Angeles Lakers arrived to Game 1 of their first-round series against the Portland Trail Blazers on Tuesday night in red baseball caps, only with a twist.

Each cap had “Make America Great Again” stitched in white letters, just like the one President Donald Trump often wears; but the words “Great Again” were crossed out, and the message “Arrest The Cops Who Killed Breonna Taylor” was printed below them.

The Lakers’ Instagram account shared a gallery of the team wearing the caps from the hotel to the arena for their playoff opener with the caption, “Justice for Breonna Taylor.”

“You know, this is something that we continue to put our foot on the gas, continue to pressure,” LeBron James said after the Lakers’ 100-93 loss. “You know, the situation that’s going on in Louisville, Kentucky. An innocent woman being killed in Breonna Taylor, a woman who had a bright future and her future was taken away from her. And there’s been no arrests. There’s been no justice. Not only for her, but for her family. And we want to continue to shed light on that situation, because it’s just unjust, and that’s what it’s about.”

It was a continuation of the calls for awareness about the circumstances surrounding Taylor’s death made by the Lakers and many other players since the NBA invited 22 teams to Orlando, Florida, to restart its season last month.

Taylor, a Black emergency medical technician, was killed in Louisville after plainclothes officers executed a “no-knock” warrant related to a narcotics investigation and shot the 26-year-old at least eight times, per reports. No drugs were found.

Taylor and her boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, were awoken by the officers who used a battering ram to enter her apartment shortly after midnight on March 13. Walker fired his gun, he said, in self-defense, believing that his home was being broken into.

The police contend they fired their weapons only after Walker shot his. Detective Brett Hankison was fired. Jon Mattingly and Myles Cosgrove, the other officers involved, were put on administrative reassignment.

Lonita Baker, the attorney representing the Taylor family, met with Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron (R) last week.

“We’re not going to wait forever,” Baker said, according to the Washington Post. “We do want this resolved quickly and accurately.”

The last time James was in the playoffs, with the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2018, he organized matching Thom Browne suits for his teammates to wear to every game. The shared look on Tuesday was centered on activism rather than aesthetics.

“First and foremost, we can’t forget the big picture, why we’re here — justice for those who died,” Lakers guard Danny Green said after the game. “Breonna Taylor especially.”

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