We’re not 100 percent certain who will win the 2018 NBA Finals, although it’s pretty much fait accompli that the Golden State Warriors will hoist their third banner in four years.
But we do know that whoever wins the championship won’t have a standing invitation from President Donald Trump to visit the White House.
Before departing for the G-7 Summit in Canada, Trump told the assembled press that the NBA champions won’t be receiving an invitation.
“I didn’t invite LeBron James, and I didn’t invite Steph Curry,” the president said. “We’re not going to invite either team. But we have other teams that are coming.
“If you look, we had Alabama, national champion. We had Clemson, national champion. We had the New England Patriots. We had the Pittsburgh Penguins last year.”
President Trump says that he will not invite either potential NBA championship team — the Cleveland Cavaliers or the Golden State Warriors — to the White House, "but we have other teams that are coming" https://t.co/PmOBh9fI0K
— CNN Politics (@CNNPolitics) June 8, 2018
Trump’s comments came just hours after the Washington Capitals claimed the first Stanley Cup in franchise history, and the president said the Caps will probably get an invite.
“I think we’ll have the Caps. We’ll see,” Trump told reporters. “You know, my attitude is if they want to be here, the greatest place on Earth, I’m here. If they don’t want to be here, I don’t want them.”
One member of the NHL champs has already indicated he doesn’t like Trump and won’t be making the visit.
“The things that he spews are straight-up racist and sexist,” Caps forward Devante Smith-Pelly said of the president. “Some of the things he’s said are pretty gross. I’m not too into politics, so I don’t know all his other views, but his rhetoric I definitely don’t agree with.
Trump’s comments about the White House visits came three days after LeBron James said that neither his Cavs nor the Warriors wanted an invite anyway.
LeBron's reaction to the #Eagles being disinvited to the White House.
"No matter who wins this series, no one wants the invite anyway." pic.twitter.com/SpNy3fXU2i
— Sportsnet (@Sportsnet) June 5, 2018
“It’s typical of him,” James said, referring to Trump pulling the invitation for the Philadelphia Eagles to visit the White House after it was clear most of the team wouldn’t be making the trip.
“I know no matter who wins this series, no one wants an invite anyway. It won’t be Cleveland or Golden State going,” James said.
On the Warriors side, both Curry and Kevin Durant agreed with LeBron’s comment that neither team was interested in going.
NBA champions traditionally go to the White House the following season whenever they pass through Washington to play the Wizards.
For the Western Conference Warriors, that means they had just one trip to D.C. last season. After having their White House invitation withdrawn, the team decided to spend the day with kids in the area with an outing that was closed off to the media.
The Minnesota Lynx won the WNBA championship in 2017 and visited the capital this week for a game. But they also did not get an invitation to the White House and instead spent the day handing out free shoes to kids at Payne Elementary School in D.C.