Tebogo, Team USA, Lyles

Noah Lyles faced negative comments from NBA players, following his historic performance in the Budapest World Athletics championships last year. His disapproval of their “world champion” label was evident, and he publicly said they didn’t deserve it because the NBA leagues didn’t provide for as wide of a background as track and field does.

Lyles commented: “You know what hurts me the most is that I have to watch the NBA Finals and they have ‘world champion’ on their head. World champion of what? The United States?”  

With this, he received a lot of backlash almost a year later. Yet, Lyles continues to stick by his statement. 

Lyles: NBA ‘whiny’ babies

Noah labeled the irritated NBA players as “whiny babies.” Notably, NBA greats like Draymond Green and Kevin Durant voiced their disapproval of Noah Lyles’ insult last year, saying that the leagues are made up of players from a variety of backgrounds rather than only Americans. More so, NBA MVP and three-time Olympic gold medalist Kevin Durant said: “Somebody help this brother.” 

Nonetheless, Lyles remained unaffected by their rebuttals. These kinds of remarks have led to scathing criticism directed against Noah Lyles. However, he’s also got support in raising the stakes. It’s interesting to note that this support originated from the NBA itself, not from track and field.

Sha’Carri Richardson, another American track and field athlete, publicly endorsed Noah without holding back. She stated: “I am standing with Noah on this one! The organization have players from different countries but do they compete against different countries. You have to go against the world in order to be a world champion!” 

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The Milwaukee Bucks’ Giannis Antetokounmpo expressed his support for Noah Lyles’ admission of the truth. He declared:  “At the end of the day, in order to be the world champ, you’ve got to beat the world. I understand the NBA is the best league in the world and the talent in the NBA is the best you’ll ever see in your life. It’s not even close, it’s the best league in the world, but we cannot say you’re the world champ because you’re playing in the best league in the world.”

Cover Photo: IG

Source: EssentiallySports

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