It was only a matter of time before the ugly side of Bubba Wallace’s stand reared its ugly end, but he has handled the situation well.
Two weeks after Wallace said Confederate flags should be removed from race tracks, a noose was found in his garage stall at Talladega Speedway in Lincoln, Ala. NASCAR made the decision to remove the flags less than two days after Wallace’s statements.
Since then, Wallace — NASCAR’s lone full-time Black driver — has become one of the biggest voices in NASCAR. After the noose was found, Wallace issued a statement and vowed to keep fighting.
A noose is a running knot that has been used to lynch African Americans throughout history. It was used during slavery, during the Jim Crow era, and nooses have also been spotted in recent days throughout the country.
The FBI is investigating the matter and NASCAR has said it will do what it can to eliminate the person responsible from the sport.
“As we have stated unequivocally, there is no place for racism in NASCAR, and this act only strengthens our resolve to make the sport open and welcoming to all,” NASCAR said in a statement.
Several sports stars have shown their support for Wallace. LeBron James and NASCAR’s own Jimmie Johnson are two of the most notable.
“this is so powerful what you are doing with @NASCAR,” Lakers forward Kyle Kuzma said on Twitter.
The NCAA dropped the hammer on Oklahoma State with a one-year postseason ban, but the Cowboys will still have their top incoming freshman, Cade Cunningham.
Cunningham is one of the most highly-regarded freshmen in the country and a projected lottery pick in the 2021 NBA Draft. After Oklahoma State’s postseason ban, many people wondered what the program’s star player would do. Once a team is issued a postseason ban, the players on the roster have the option of transferring without being forced to sit a season.
Cunningham committed to the Cowboys in November 2019. He was ranked as the No. 1 overall player in the 2020 recruiting class according to 247 Sports.
Fans at Oklahoma State won’t have a postseason, but getting a chance to watch a potentially game-changing talent ruin the hopes of other teams could be a lot of fun.
The Wizards will be missing their top shooter when the NBA returns. Davis Bertans announced he will not return to the season in Orlando.
He became the first player to publicly announce that he won’t be in Orlando. According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, Bertans could lose $520,000.
Bertans’ decision is a precautionary measure to prevent injury. He has had two ACL injuries in the past.
The long layoff with a restart is unconventional. Most of the attention has been focused on keeping players and other Orlando attendees safe from COVID-19, but the chance of getting a basketball-related injury is a concern. Victor Oladipo, who returned to play shortly before the season was postponed, is one of the players who is evaluating the health risks.