Basketball officials are investigating a complaint by hoops star Jeremy Lin that he was called “coronavirus” as an anti-Asian slur on court.
Lin, who currently plays for the Santa Cruz Warriors in the NBA’s G League, described the attack in a Facebook post Thursday in which he condemned ongoing racism against the Asian American community.
“Being a 9-year NBA veteran doesn’t protect me from being called ‘coronavirus’ on the court,” he wrote.
Verbal and physical attacks on Asian Americans have soared since Donald Trump began scapegoating China for COVID-19, repeatedly and inaccurately calling it the “China virus” and using the racist term “kung flu.”
Lin last year slammed Trump’s “anti-Chinese message” for empowering “more hate towards Asians.”
Lin didn’t provide details in the post about where the name-calling occurred. He has been playing in the Orlando, Florida, bubble for his team, ESPN noted.
Golden State Warriors coach Steve Kerr said that he’d like to see the NBA investigate Lin’s complaint.
Kerr called the Facebook post “really powerful. I applaud Jeremy for his words and echo his sentiments regarding racism against the Asian American community,” he added.
“It’s just so ridiculous and obviously spawned by many people, including our former president, as it relates to the coronavirus originating in China. It’s just shocking,” said Kerr.
Lin broke barriers when he joined the Golden State Warriors in the 2010-11 season as the first U.S.-born NBA player of Chinese or Taiwanese descent, according to ESPN.
There were more than 1,800 racist incidents against Asian Americans reported in the U.S. in a single eight-week period from March 2020 to May 2020, according to a United Nations investigation last August.