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Kobe affirms he'd kneel during anthem if still playing

theScore logo theScore 10/5/2017

© Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports / Action Images Were he still an active competitor in the NBA, former Los Angeles Lakers star Kobe Bryant knows exactly how he'd act during the playing of the national anthem at a time when athletes are using the occasion to protest social issues.

Bryant said during a recent appearance on The Hollywood Reporter's "Awards Chatter" podcast that he'd take a knee during "The Star-Spangled Banner," according to ESPN's Ohm Youngmisuk.

He was then asked what he would convey to President Donald Trump if he had the opportunity to speak with him one on one.

"Focus on serving, not leading," said Bryant.

When Trump made waves after uninviting Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry to the White House, Bryant joined a number of other basketball stars in openly criticizing the POTUS.

Months earlier, Bryant mentioned he'd probably pay the White House a visit, as it's less about the administration and more about teammates, love for the country, and the children who look up to professional athletes.

This year's Lakers squad intends to lock arms during the anthem throughout the upcoming regular season, with head coach Luke Walton saying it will display unity within the organization, while also showing respect for the country.

Related - Knicks' Kanter: 'I would've taken a knee' during anthem

The league has strict rules in place prohibiting kneeling, reminding players and coaches that they're required to stand in a recent memo.

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