San Antonio Spurs coach Gregg Popovich has been an outspoken critic of Donald Trump since before he was elected president. Popovich recently spoke out following Trump's revoking of the Warriors' White House invitation and his comments about NFL players who kneel during the anthem, but Pop's latest outrage may be the harshest yet.
Popovich, who served five years of active duty in the U.S. Air Force, was incensed by Trump's recent comments following the death of four U.S. soldiers killed in an ambush in Niger.
"President Obama and other presidents, most of them didn't make calls, a lot of them didn't make calls," Trump said. "I like to call when it's appropriate, when I think I'm able to do it."
Popovich called The Nation's Dave Zirin to give his feelings on the matter:
I've been amazed and disappointed by so much of what this President had said, and his approach to running this country, which seems to be one of just a never ending divisiveness. But his comments today about those who have lost loved ones in times of war and his lies that previous presidents Obama and Bush never contacted their families, is so beyond the pale, I almost don't have the words.
This man in the Oval Office is a soulless coward who thinks that he can only become large by belittling others. This has of course been a common practice of his, but to do it in this manner – and to lie about how previous Presidents responded to the deaths of soldiers – is as low as it gets. We have a pathological liar in the White House: unfit intellectually, emotionally, and psychologically to hold this office and the whole world knows it, especially those around him every day. The people who work with this President should be ashamed because they know it better than anyone just how unfit he is, and yet they choose to do nothing about it. This is their shame most of all.
Talk of national anthem protests in the NBA has died down in recent weeks but, with the regular season beginning on Tuesday, there is a chance we could see players and coaches launching some form of protest. Popovich is among several NBA coaches who have said they will support their players' right to express themselves.