A chunk of NBA teams have stopped staying at President Trump’s swanky Soho hotel — a neighborhood in Manhattan — since he officially started his presidential bid in 2015, according to a new story from The Washington Post.
But it’s unclear if the New Orleans Pelicans, who’ve also stayed at the once-popular spot for pro teams, will be in that number. Citing team policy, the Pelicans said Thursday that they don’t reveal hotel plans for security purposes.
According to the Post, a dozen teams have stayed at Trump’s SoHo hotel since its opening in 2010. Those include the Pelicans, Dallas Mavericks, Indiana Pacers, Oklahoma City Thunder, Golden State Warriors, Memphis Grizzlies, Cleveland Cavaliers, Houston Rockets, Phoenix Suns, Sacramento Kings, Toronto Raptors and Washington Wizards.
Trump hotels are also located near NBA teams in Midtown, Manhattan; Washington D.C.; and Chicago. The Milwaukee Bucks, according to the report, have stopped staying at the Chicago location.
Toronto is home to a hotel operated by the Trump organization and had its name licensed to it, but a deal was announced earlier this year that would remove the president’s name from it.
But they started leaving, and they’re unlikely to return, since Trump has made athletes a target. 7/ pic.twitter.com/Fzf7593ZTv
— David Fahrenthold (@Fahrenthold) October 12, 2017
Teams gave the Post various reasons for quitting Trump properties. Some declined comment. Some simply said politics didn’t play a part. The reigning NBA champion Warriors chose to address the decision head-on.
“The president has seemingly made a point of dividing us as best he can,” Kerr told the Post. “He continually offends people, and so people don’t want to stay at his hotel. It’s pretty simple.”
The NBA regular season begins on Tuesday, Oct. 17. The Pelicans open up their scheduled the next day in Memphis. They play at the New York Knicks on Jan. 9 and at the Brooklyn Nets on Jan. 12.
Click here to read the Post’s full story.