Washington, Jan 17 (EFE).- President Joe Biden on Tuesday welcomed the reigning NBA champions, the Golden State Warriors, to the White House, praising them for their “joy” and their “drive” on the court as well as for their social commitment.
The president said the Warriors “reflect America” with their style of play, which features “constant motion, with individual freedom and personality that comes together as one team, a team that plays with joy, with drive to be their best.”
In that regard, the president said that the Warriors are an example of what the US can achieve if people join efforts on all fronts.
Everything is possible “if we do it together,” he said.
Coached by Steve Kerr and led on the court by point guard Stephen Curry, the Warriors recently defeated the Boston Celtics 4-2 in the best-of-seven-games National Basketball Association final tourney, earning a fourth championship ring in the past eight seasons.
The Warriors came to the White House after the first of those four championships in 2015, when Barack Obama was president, but they did not visit Washington after their two subsequent championship wins – in 2017 and 2018 – due to the team’s differences with Republican President Donald Trump.
“The Golden State Warriors are always welcome in this White House,” Biden said, going on to pay tribute to Curry, calling him “one of the great sportsmen of our time.”
The president described the team from San Francisco as one of the most successful franchises in basketball and all sports, emphasizing in particular their most recent championship, which they achieved despite numerous injuries and the fact that many had written them off after they didn’t make the playoffs in 2021.
“Fellas, I know what it feels like,” Biden joked.
The president also paid tribute to the men on the Warriors roster, praising Kerr for his courage and humility and expressing his admiration for Curry not only as a player “but as a person.”
Also attending the White House event was Vice President Kamala Harris, who emphasized that she is a “proud daughter” of Oakland, California, the city where the Warriors played for almost half a century before they moved to San Francisco.
She said that she keeps a custom-made Warriors jersey near her treadmill as “a symbol of grit, determination and teamwork,” and praised the players, coaches and the whole organization for consistently defending the principles of equality and justice.
Meanwhile, Curry said that “it means a lot” for the team to be at the White House to celebrate their most recent ring and he presented Biden with a Warriors jersey with the suggestion that perhaps the president could hang it in the Oval Office.
Curry joked that “Hopefully we can come back (in the future) and check if it’s (still) up there.”
In a speech before the daily White House press conference, Curry thanked Biden for having managed to bring WNBA star Brittney Griner back to the US after she had been imprisoned for almost a year in Russia after being convicted of possessing hashish oil vaping cartridges when she was going to board a flight in Russia.
These memorable Warriors, among whom Klay Thompson and Draymond Green also stand out, are not doing so well so far this season, sitting in seventh place in the Western Conference rankings with a 22-22 record, far below the leading Denver Nuggets and Memphis Grizzlies, both of whom have 30-13 records so far.
Before the event with Biden, Kerr on Tuesday participated in a roundtable discussion with top White House officials regarding gun violence, a particularly sensitive issue for the coach since his father was murdered by two gunmen in 1984 in Beirut.