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OAKLAND – The controversy swirling about the 2017 NBA All-Star Game, currently scheduled for Charlotte, was bound to land upon Stephen Curry, who considers as his hometown that North Carolina city.
By passing a state law this week that allows local governments to exclude civil rights protection for gay and transgender individuals, a number of businesses have expressed reservations about the law and, by extension, their presence in North Carolina.
The NBA, typically acutely aware and responsive to discrimination, is one such business. The league issued a statement Thursday with a thinly veiled threat to pull their All-Star Game out of Charlotte.
“I know the NBA has a stance on equality and incorporating all beliefs and people from all sorts of backgrounds,” Curry said after Warriors shootaround Friday morning. “It’s interesting how that intersection is, with the state law and the NBA having an event there.
“Hopefully ... the right things need to happen, that the All-Star Game stays in Charlotte, because that would be huge for the city.”
The controversial law, passed in a special session Wednesday and signed by Gov. Pat McCrory (R) within hours, makes North Carolina the first state to ban students and other persons from using restrooms that don’t correspond with the sex listed at birth. Caitlyn Jenner, for example, would have to use the men’s bathroom.
The NBA on Thursday issued its own statement: “We are deeply concerned that this discriminatory law runs counter to our guiding principles of equality and mutual respect and do not yet know what impact it will have on our ability to successfully host the 2017 All-Star Game in Charlotte.”
Curry still hopes there can be some sort of compromise.
“It would be (something) just to show what Charlotte’s all about, regardless of where you fall on that law,” he said. “So, hopefully, they can figure it out and keep it there because I think it’s really important for the city of Charlotte and I’m sure we can figure that out.”