TORONTO, Canada—Following in the footsteps of the National Basketball Association (NBA), Major League Soccer (MLS) officially announced Wednesday night that the league has decided to postpone the remainder of its matches for the evening in support of the Black Lives Matter movement.
The announcement comes in light of the NBA’s Milwaukee Bucks’ decision to boycott their playoff game Wednesday afternoon as a result of the horrific and senseless shooting of Jacob Blake, a black man, shot several times by police in Kenosha, Wisconsin.
Following suit, the rest of the NBA, along with the WNBA, MLB, and of course MLS then proceeded to postpone their games later Wednesday evening.
“We stand in solidarity with the Black community, with our players, our city and our fans in the fight against injustice,” Atlanta United tweeted out. “We must use our voices to be the change.”
At this moment, it is unclear when those games will be made up. In fact, the latest report as of 10 p.m. EST Friday evening has NBA players discussing the possibility of leaving their bubble and ending the season.
As they’ve done since the beginning of the Black Lives Matter movement, Toronto FC players were quick to support their fellow team’s protests.
What is happening in the world is much bigger than the game we play.— Mark Delgado (@MarkyDelgado) August 27, 2020
We need change.
We need justice.
We need action.
ENOUGH IS ENOUGH.
“What is happening in the world is much bigger than the game we play. We need change. We need justice. We need action. NOW. ENOUGH IS ENOUGH,” tweeted out midfielder Marky Delgado.
Proud of sports tonight and all of my guys in MLS. ✊— Jozy Altidore (@JozyAltidore) August 27, 2020
“Proud of sports tonight and all of my guys in MLS,” added Jozy Altidore.
Justin Morrow, executive of the Black Players Coalition of MLS, retweeted a statement from his organization.
“We fully support the actions today of our peers in MLS, NBA, WNBA & MLB. As well as the recent actions of Atlanta United and Inter Miami CF,” the coalition released in a statement. “We continue to stand with those in the struggle for racial equality and human rights.
“As professional athletes, we must continue to speak out about these injustices and use our various platforms until we see change.”
For what it’s worth, MLSE’s Toronto Raptors were the first team that reportedly held discussions about protesting their playoff game (set to take place Thursday).
Lot of conversation tonight, but some of the strongest voices on shutting down the returned season have been coming from two teams, per sources: The Bucks and Raptors. Blake shooting happened in Milwaukee's backyard. Raps have experienced this, and Masai body cam footage. Heavy.— Chris Mannix (@SIChrisMannix) August 27, 2020
We also know very well that Toronto FC have been are the forefront of the BLM movement in MLS, led by Morrow and General Manager Ali Curtis.
That’s why Friday night becomes that much more noteworthy. Toronto FC is scheduled to play next in MLS, Friday evening against Montreal. Will they continue to lead the charge?
We’ll keep you up to date on this developing story.