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Washington Redskins considering changing name just to be 'politically correct': Trump

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ABC News(WASHINGTON) — BY: OLIVIA EUBANKS

President Donald Trump on Monday weighed in on the Washington Redskins football team and Cleveland Indians baseball team considering changing their names — names Native Americans have long complained are racially offensive.

While he didn’t flat-out say he’s opposed to a change in their names, he tweeted that the franchises are trying to be “politically correct” and his views seemed clear. He took a swipe as well at Democratic Sen. Elizabeth Warren, who he repeatedly calls “Pocahontas,” claiming she misrepresented her Native American ancestry.

“They name teams out of STRENGTH, not weakness, but now the Washington Redskins & Cleveland Indians, two fabled sports franchises, look like they are going to be changing their names in order to be politically correct. Indians, like Elizabeth Warren, must be very angry right now!” he tweeted.

The Washington Redskins announced on Friday that the team would undergo a “thorough review” of the teams’s name, saying the decision was made “in light of recent events around our country and feedback from our community.”

“This process allows the team to take into account not only the proud tradition and history of the franchise but also input from our alumni, the organization, sponsors, the National Football League and the local community it is proud to represent on and off the field,” owner Dan Snyder said in a statement.

Snyder, who bought the team in 1999, has previously said the team would “never” change the name, arguing it actually honored Native Americans.

In the last few days, though, the team has come under heavy public pressure from corporate sponsors to change its name, including from FedEx, which owns the naming rights to the stadium where the Washington team plays in Landover, Maryland.

ABC News’ Ben Gittleson and Lauren Lantry contributed to this report.

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Trump lashes out at Bubba Wallace, NASCAR over noose investigation, Confederate flag ban

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Official White House Photo by Tia DufourBy IVAN PEREIRA, ABC News

(WASHINGTON) — President Donald Trump lashed out at NASCAR’s only full-time Black driver on Twitter Monday morning, demanding he apologize for an investigation into an apparent noose found in the driver’s garage.

In the same tweet, the president also blasted NASCAR for banning Confederate flags from all raceways.

A Richard Petty Motorsports crew person saw and reported an apparent noose on June 21 in a Talladega Superspeedway garage that was assigned to driver Bubba Wallace and his team.

Wallace has been vocal about his support for the Black Lives Matter movement and pushed NASCAR to remove Confederate flags from all sanctioned events, a decision the company announced shortly before the crew member found the rope.

NASCAR alerted the FBI and the agency conducted an investigation. Investigators determined it was a pull rope fashioned like a noose and had been there since October, before Wallace was assigned to the garage.

Wallace said he stood by the FBI’s conclusion and NASCAR’s statement of support, but Trump on Monday tweeted that the driver should apologize to everyone involved and called the incident “a hoax.” He added that the noose investigation and the decision to remove Confederate flags from raceways “caused the lowest ratings EVER,” without any citation.

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Wallace and NASCAR didn’t have an immediate response to the president’s tweet.

Wallace and NASCAR didn’t have an immediate response to the president’s tweet, but over the last few weeks, other NASCAR drivers and NASCAR President Steve Phelps have shown Wallace their support. Before the start of the race following the apparent noose’s discovery, various drivers helped push Wallace’s car to the starting line in a symbolic gesture.

On Monday, NASCAR driver Tyler Reddick fired back at the president with a tweet saying drivers didn’t need an apology.

“We did what was right and we will do just fine without your support,” he tweeted, along with a gif that showed footage from a play where a character portrayed by Denzel Washington closes the door on a white character.

 

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When asked about the tweet during an appearance on Fox News later in the morning, White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany defended the president. She brought up examples of questionable hate crime reports such as the case of Jussie Smollett, who has been accused of staging a racist and homophobic attack on himself.

“The president is making a broader point that judging before the facts are out is not acceptable,” McEnany contended.

NASCAR’S Phelps said the company would continue to investigate the incident, and Wallace tweeted on June 24 that he was grateful the community and investigators took the situation seriously.

“Make no mistake, though some will try, this should not detract from the show of unity we had on Monday and the progress we’ve made as a sport to be a more welcoming environment for all,” he tweeted.

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Wallace told The View on June 23 he wasn’t shocked that some people contend the incident was a hoax.

“It’s simple-minded people like that, the ones afraid of change, they use everything in their power to defend what they stand up for instead of trying to listen and understand what’s going on,” he said.

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Report: Redskins' minority owners looking to sell shares in team

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33ft/iStockBy JEANETTE TORRES-PEREZ, ABC News

(NEW YORK) — The minority owners of the Washington Redskins are reportedly looking to get rid of their shares in the NFL team.

The Washington Post reports Robert Rothman, Dwight Schar and Frederick W. Smith have enlisted the help of an investment banking firm  to search for possible buyers.

The three businessmen, who altogether own approximately 40% of the Redskins, are “not happy being a partner” with team owner Daniel Snyder, sources told The Post.

The news comes after the team announced last week that it would begin a “thorough review” of its controversial name that Native Americans have long objected to as racially offensive.

In a statement Friday, the team said the decision was made “in light of recent events around our country and feedback from our community” and it comes after a month of protests calling for racial justice and equality.

“This process allows the team to take into account not only the proud tradition and history of the franchise but also input from our alumni, the organization, sponsors, the National Football League and the local community it is proud to represent on and off the field,” Snyder said in a statement.

Snyder, who bought the team in 1999, has previously said the team would “never” change the name, arguing it actually honored Native Americans.

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

NHL, NHLPA finalize protocols for season to resume in Edmonton and Toronto

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francisblack/iStockBy ABC News

(NEW YORK) — The NHL and NHLPA have finalized the protocols for the season to resume this summer in Toronto and Edmonton, Alberta, NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly told ESPN.

As of Sunday night, the sides still were finalizing the details of a memorandum of understanding for a collective bargaining agreement extension.

The Phase 3 (training camp) and Phase 4 (24-team tournament) return-to-play protocols will need to be approved by the NHLPA’s executive committee, which is composed of one representative from each of the 31 teams. Once that is done, the entire package — both the return-to-play protocol and the CBA extension — will go to a full membership vote of all NHL players. The NHL’s board of governors also must ratify the package.

The NHL is now targeting a July 13 start date for training camps, sources told ESPN. If all goes according to plan, teams would travel to the hub cities on July 25 or July 26, and games will begin by Aug. 1. The Eastern Conference teams will play in Toronto, and the Western Conference teams will be in Edmonton.

The 24-team tournament will conclude with a Stanley Cup Final in Edmonton, likely in early October.

The protocols include an agreement that no player will be penalized if he chooses to opt out, and he does not have to give a reason for wanting to opt out. Players have until 5 p.m. ET on Tuesday to notify their teams if they are opting out.

Family members will not be able to join players until the conference finals.

According to the document, “all individuals shall maintain physical distancing (a minimum of 6-foot distance) at all times throughout Phase 4, to the extent possible” — which includes being on planes and buses, at restaurants and in any social circumstances. The league will provide face coverings, though individuals may bring their own, and they must be worn at all times in the secure zones. Players do not need to wear face coverings while exercising, and coaches do not need to wear them while on the bench.

If teams do not comply with the protocols, it could lead to “significant financial penalties” and potential loss of draft picks.

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Washington Redskins, under pressure from corporate sponsors, reviewing name

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Phil Ellsworth / ESPN ImagesBy LAUREN LANTRY, ABC News

(ASHBURN, Va.) — The Washington Redskins announced Friday that the NFL football team will be “undergoing a thorough review of the team name” that Native Americans have long objected to as racially offensive.

In a statement, the team said the review “formalizes the initial discussions the team has been having with the league in recent weeks.”

It said it was doing so “in light of recent events around our country and feedback from our community.”

Previously, team owner Daniel Synder has said the team would never change its name, claiming it actually honored Native Americans.

But in just the past day or so, the team has come under heavy pressure from corporate sponsors to change the name, including from FedEx, which own the naming rights to the stadium where the Washington team plays in Landover, Maryland.

“We have communicated to the team in Washington our request that they change the team name,” FedEx said in a short statement Thursday and on Thursday night Nike appeared to have removed Redskins merchandise available for sale online.

“This process allows the team to take into account not only the proud tradition and history of the franchise but also input from our alumni, the organization, sponsors, the National Football League and the local community it is proud to represent on and off the field,” Snyder is quoted as saying in the statement.

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said in a statement, “In the last few weeks, we have had ongoing discussions with Dan, and we are supportive of this important step,” according to NFL.com.

The new coach, Ron Rivera, is quoted in the team statement as saying, “This issue is of personal importance to me and I look forward to working closely with Dan Synder to make sure we continue the mission of honoring and supporting Native Americans and our Military.”

“We believe this review can and will be conducted with the best interest of all in mind,” the statement concludes.

Just last week, a memorial to the team’s founder, George Preston Marshall, an ardent segregationist. was removed from the team’s previous home field, RFK Stadium in Washington, D.C.

D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser has said any desire the team had to move back to that site or elsewhere in the city would face opposition because of the current name.

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

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