‘His legacy is so vast’: Utah Jazz coach Quin Snyder honors Rep. John Lewis with shirt, says voting has been emphasized in NBA bubble
SALT LAKE CITY — As the NBA community works to keep dialogue open regarding racial justice while in the league’s bubble at Disney World, Utah Jazz head coach Quin Snyder regularly wears shirts or shares messages during his Zoom media availabilities related to the topic.
On Monday at his pregame availability before the Jazz played the Dallas Mavericks, Snyder donned a shirt with a quote from the late Rep. John Lewis, a prominent figure in the civil rights movement over the last 60-plus years who died on July 17.
“Do not get lost in a sea of despair,” Snyder’s black shirt with white writing read. “Be hopeful, be optimistic. Our struggle is not the struggle of a day, a week, a month, or a year, it is the struggle of a lifetime. Never, ever be afraid to make some noise and get in good trouble, necessary trouble.”
The tagline “good trouble” became synonymous with Lewis, who served Georgia in the United States House of Representatives from 1987 until his death last month, and a documentary about him with that title was released earlier this year.
Given Lewis’ prominent role in the civil rights movement and the fact that he died while the NBA has been in the bubble (Lewis’ funeral services were held just hours before Utah and the New Orleans Pelicans tipped off the Orlando restart on July 30), Snyder said Monday that there’s been an abundance of conversation about his legacy in Florida.
More particularly, Snyder said there’s been a big focus of conversation within his team and the league in general surrounding voting and the right to do it, something Lewis fought for and championed throughout his life.
Snyder said that within his group, there’s been an emphasis on making sure people are doing things like registering and filling out the census.
“His legacy is so vast,” Snyder said of Lewis. “We talk about ‘good trouble.’ That’s something that guys are conscious of and trying to make a difference in many ways, but particularly with voting.”
In that vein, Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James recently started a nonprofit organization called “More Than a Vote,” which is advocating for sporting venues to be used as polling places. With Atlanta Hawks head coach Lloyd Pierce playing a key role, State Farm Arena (home of the Hawks) became its own voting precinct just a few weeks before Lewis’ death, and a number of other NBA arenas have since received similar authorization.