For Some NBA Teams, Pride Night Important For “Embracing Inclusivity”

For Cleveland Cavaliers’ Pride Night, Rocket Mortage FieldHouse’s massive 77,110 square-foot curtain wall was lit with the colorful shades of the rainbow in recognition of the LGBTQ+ community. (Photo Credit: Cleveland Cavaliers Official Website)

For the second year, the Cleveland Cavaliers recognized the LGBTQ community of the Cleveland area during its Pride Night on April 30.  During Pride Night at the Cavs home court Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse, a video that showcased important figures in the Northeast Ohio LGBTQ community premiered called “For The Love. For The Land For Pride.”

In a collaboration with photographer Autumn Bland, best known for her Portraits of Pride photo series, the video was inspired by the Cavaliers For The Love. For The Land. banner which is hanging on the Sherwin Williams Corporate Headquarters in Downtown Cleveland.

(Photo Credit: Cleveland Cavaliers Official Website)

Earlier in April, the Houston Rockets hosted its first Pride Night event, which was originally scheduled for April 2020 but, due to the pandemic, was canceled. In an interview with Houston’s LGBTQ publication, OutSmart Magazine, Rockets CEO Tad Brown explained:

“Embracing inclusivity is something our team believes in strongly. It is our responsibility to celebrate all members of our community, including LGBTQ fans. Pride Night will provide an experience that shows how much we support and appreciate them.”

The Rockets became the latest team in the NBA to host Pride Nights. Other teams to host a Pride Night are Los Angeles Lakers, New York Knicks, Boston Celtics, Milwaukee Bucks, Phoenix Suns, Los Angeles Clippers, Miami Heat, Philadelphia 76ers, New Jersey Devils,  and Golden State Warriors, who were the first defending NBA champions to hold such an event in 2017, thanks to the Warriors President and CEO Rick Welts, who is openly gay.

Welts, who was the first NBA executive to come out, announced last month on the Warriors Twitter account he would be stepping down from his role as President and CEO at the end of the 2020-21 season.


Sources: NBA.com, Cleveland Cavaliers Official YouTube Channel, Portraits of Pride, OutSmart Magazine, New York Times, Out Sports, Golden State Warriors PR Official Twitter Account

 

Leave a Comment