Mike Brown

Kings coach Mike Brown emotionally addresses Maine mass shooting

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After the Kings dominated the Utah Jazz in their 2023-24 NBA season opener, coach Mike Brown didn't want to talk about basketball.

While Brown's team was playing the Jazz on Wednesday night at Delta Center, a gunman opened fire at several locations more than 2,400 miles away in Lewiston, Maine, killing at least 22 people and wounding many others.

When Brown approached the podium for his routine postgame press conference, basketball was the last thing on his mind.

"First thing I'd like to say is, I don't know everything that's going on, I'm not that smart, but I know we as a country got to do something," Brown began. "I'm walking over here and somebody says there was a mass shooting in Maine with 22 dead. If that doesn't touch anybody, I don't know. I don't even know what to say. That is absolutely disgusting and it's sad. And it's sad that we sit here and we watch this happen time after time after time after time. And nobody does anything about it.

"It's a sad day. It's a sad day for our country. It's a sad day in this world. And until we decide to do something about it, the powers that be, this is going to keep happening. And our kids aren't going to be able to enjoy what the United States is about because we don't know how to fix a problem that's right in front of us. It's sad. I feel for the families. I don't know what else to say."

As of 10 p.m. Thursday night, at least 22 people have been confirmed dead and 50 to 60 people were wounded at several locations, including a local bowling alley.

Police named 40-year-old Robert Card as a person of interest in connection with the shootings at Schemengees Bar and Sparetime Recreation.

The NBA is one of the most involved professional sports leagues when it comes to players, coaches and others using their platforms to raise awareness on certain issues. Brown was asked how he feels the NBA has done with its messaging related to gun violence and mass shootings.

"You commend Adam Silver and the players that lead this league," Brown said. "Chris Paul, LeBron James to name a few that stand up to use their platforms the right way. And you hope that we continue. Obviously it hasn't done much because for something like that to happen tonight, that's just sick. It's just sick. I don't know what else to say. It's absolutely sick."

Brown was asked if he could be thrown a basketball question, to which he politely declined.

"I don't even want to talk basketball, I'm sorry," he replied. "We played a game. It was fun. Obviously, we won. If we can't do anything to fix this, it's over. It's over for our country for this to happen time after time. I'll talk tomorrow."

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