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Michael Jordan, Kings owner release statements opposing Trump's comments

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Michael Jordan is the latest owner to speak out in regards to Donald Trump's recent criticism of NBA and NFL athletes, releasing a statement Sunday to address the controversial opinions of the U.S. President.

"One of the fundamental rights this country is founded on was freedom of speech, and we have a long tradition of nonviolent, peaceful protest," Jordan wrote in a statement, according to Rick Bonnell of The Charlotte Observer. "Those who exercise the right to peacefully express themselves should not be demonized or ostracized.

"At a time of increasing divisiveness and hate in this country, we should be looking for ways to work together and support each other and not create more division.

"I support Commissioner Adam Silver, the NBA, its players and all those who wish to exercise their right to free speech."

Sacramento Kings owner Vivek Ranadive released a statement of his own, vocalizing his disappointment with the president's comments.

"I have a deep respect for our nation's unwavering commitment to free speech and support all Americans' right to freely express themselves," Ranadive wrote in a statement. "The president's recent comments are deeply disappointing, because our focus should be on fostering a culture of sensitivity and inclusion. Our mission at the Sacramento Kings has always been to unite our community and use our platform to create positive change, so we continue to stand with our players, and all people, who use their platform to raise awareness and make Sacramento and our country proud."

A number of NBA players have spoken out after Trump revoked the Golden State Warriors' invitation to the White House, including Cleveland Cavaliers star LeBron James, who referred to the 45th president as a "a bum."

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