Rudy Gobert and Donovan Mitchell Shut Down Anti-BLM Utah Jazz Fan

Utah Jazz duo Rudy Gobert and Donovan Mitchell called out a fan on Twitter who said he would no longer support the team and would stop watching games on TV if the NBA went ahead with plans for a visual message to support the Black Lives Matter movement.

On Tuesday, ESPN reported the NBA and the NBA Players Association were planning to paint "Black Lives Matter" on the court at the three arenas that will be used at ESPN's Wide World of Sports Complex at Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida, when the season resumes on July 31.

A Jazz fan, however, appeared less than supportive of the initiative.

"If you paint 'BLM' on the court, you have lost this Utah Jazz fan for life," the fan replied to a tweet from Jazz's G-League affiliate Salt Lake City Stars, in which the team promoted an auction whose proceeds will go towards the Racial Equity and Inclusion Fund.

"Never again. Won't even watch on TV. Gone like yesterday".

The user found himself "getting ratioed," attracting a number of replies that vastly outnumbers likes or retweets and is telling sign users disagree with the message in the tweet.

Gobert and Mitchell wasted no time in rebuking the fan.

"If you don't think Black Lives Matter then maybe you shouldn't watch us in the first place," the Frenchman tweeted in response.

Mitchell, meanwhile, limited himself to a more laconic but not less effective "Bye".

Last month, several NBA players joined the nationwide Black Lives Matter protests sparked by the killing of George Floyd, who died while in police custody in Minneapolis on May 25.

Brooklyn Nets star Kyrie Irving went even further and urged his colleagues to sit out the resumption of the season in Orlando to send a powerful message in the current political climate.

"I don't support going into Orlando," Irving, one of the six vice-presidents of the NBA Players Association, told around 80 players on a phone call on June 12.

"I'm not with the systematic racism and the bulls**t. ... Something smells a little fishy. Whether we want to admit it or not, we are targeted as black men every day we wake up."

NBA commissioner Adam Silver was supportive of peaceful protests last month and reiterated his stance during an appearance on TIME 100 Talks on Tuesday.

"I am not comfortable with the word 'allow,'" he said when asked whether players will be allowed to take a knee during the national anthem, a protest former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick first introduced in 2016.

"I think we have had a rule on our books that goes back to the early '80s that precedes even [former NBA commissioner] David Stern's tenure as commissioner that calls for players to stand in a line and attention during the national anthem.

"I also understand the role of protest, and I think that we'll deal with that situation when it presents itself."

Donovan Mitchell, Rudy Gobert, Utah Jazz
Donovan Mitchell #45 and Rudy Gobert #27 of the Utah Jazz react after a play against the Sacramento Kings at Golden 1 Center on November 1, 2019 in Sacramento, California. Lachlan Cunningham/Getty
Rudy Gobert and Donovan Mitchell Shut Down Anti-BLM Utah Jazz Fan | Sports