|[Published: Sunday August 05 2018]
Athletes slam Trump for insulting NBA star
WASHINGTON 5 Aug (ANA) - Donald Trump has sparked uproar online after taking aim at basketball superstar LeBron James, with many social media users calling the US president "racist" and a "bully".
In a tweet late on Friday, Trump questioned the intelligence of the three-time NBA champion, following an interview on CNN with host Don Lemon, in which James criticised the Republican president for "dividing the sport".
"Lebron James was just interviewed by the dumbest man on television, Don Lemon. He made Lebron look smart, which isn't easy to do," Trump said.
"I like Mike!" he added, referring to NBA legend Michael Jordan, who along with James is widely considered as one of the greatest basketball players ever.
In the wide-ranging one-on-one interview which was first aired on Monday with a repeat broadcast on Friday, Lemon asked James: "What would you say to the [US] president if he was sitting right here?"
"I would never sit across from him," the four-time MVP replied, before adding: "I'd sit across from Barack [Obama], though."
James, who signed recently for the Los Angeles Lakers, was being interviewed about a school he recently opened for underprivileged children in his hometown of Akron, Ohio, among other topics.
Reacting to Trump's tweet, fellow athletes, sports writers and fans jumped to James' defence and criticised the US president, while Jordan also offered his support.
"I support LeBron James," Jordan said in a statement to the Associated Press news agency on Saturday. "He's doing an amazing job for his community."
American football Hall of Famer Shannon Sharpe tweeted: "It should be beneath the dignity of a sitting US president to take racist shots at Don Lemon and LeBron James."(ANA)
FA/ANA/5 August 2018-------