LeBron James has harsh words for NFL owners—if calling them "old white men" with a "slave mentality" is still considered harsh. The NBA great made his remarks on Friday's episode of The Shop when talking about NFL social-injustice protests with actor/rapper Ice Cube, LA Rams player Todd Gurley, and business partner Maverick Carter, per CBS Sports. "In the NFL, they got a bunch of old white men owning teams and they got that slave mentality," says James on the HBO show. "And it's like, 'This is my team. You do what the (expletive) I tell y'all to do. Or we get rid of y'all.'"
"I'm so appreciative in our league of our commissioner," adds James. "He doesn't mind us having ... a real feeling and be able to express that. It doesn't even matter if Adam agrees with what we are saying, he at least wants to hear us out." While NBA players have expressed political opinions about police violence by wearing T-shirts during warmups, the Washington Post notes that former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick sparked waves of controversy by kneeling for the national anthem and hasn't played in a game since 2016. "I am very educated about what I believe in and I’m not doing it in a violent way," says James. "...But you know people go crazy when things are done outside the box. People don't know how to react." (Meanwhile, Maroon 5 is running into problems with its Super Bowl halftime show.)