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LeBron James stands up for Minnesota Lynx on White House invite issue

While men's teams have been invited, the Lynx are still waiting.

LeBron James is focused on trying to lead the Cleveland Cavaliers out of an 0-2 hole against the Golden State Warriors in the NBA Finals, but on the eve of Game 3 he was talking about the Minnesota Lynx. 

Why was the best player on the planet talking about the Lynx? Because the Lynx have yet to receive an invitation to visit President Donald Trump at the White House, as is tradition for championship teams in America, since winning the WNBA title eight months ago.

"I think it's laughable at this point," said LeBron during his NBA Finals press conference on Tuesday. "You know you always hear the saying, 'you just laugh to stop you from crying.'"

"For them not to even be invited playing our beautiful game of basketball, no matter if it's WNBA or the NBA or if it's little leagues or high school, whatever the case might be it's basketball, it's our beautiful game," said LeBron. "And for those women, those girls are unbelievable at doing it – it's laughable in my opinion."

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Lynx will do community service in D.C.

In lieu of an invitation, the Lynx will spend Wednesday in Washington, D.C. spreading goodwill through community service.

They'll be giving new shoes to students at an elementary school where 30 percent of the students are homeless and all of them live under the "low income" status.

All 340 students will receive new Nike, Jordan Brand or DTLR Villa shoes and socks. 

The Lynx (2-5) are in town to take on the Washington Mystics (5-3) in D.C. on Thursday at 3 p.m.

While President Trump has yet to invite the Lynx, he has sent invitations to Alabama's college football team and the Super Bowl champion Philadelphia Eagles. To Lynx head coach Cheryl Reeve, it's just another insult to women in America.  

"I don't want to think that maybe it's because we're women that we're not as valued, but it's hard to see it anything different than that because the men's sports have been invited," Reeve said in a podcast with Richard Dietsch last month. 

Reeve made note that the Lynx never waited more than 24 hours to get a call from President Barack Obama after they won championships in 2011, 2013 and 2015. 

You can watch LeBron's comments about the Lynx beginning at the 4:10 mark of the video

A history of sports stars avoiding White House visits

The White House has seen many sports stars turning down invitations for a visit following championship wins since President Trump's election, with LeBron saying the neither the Cavaliers nor Warriors will go if they're invited to the White House after the NBA Finals. 

President Trump uninvited the Philadelphia Eagles earlier this week after learning that only 10 or so players planned on attending.

But it should be noted that this phenomenon isn't exclusive to President Trump. Three members of the 1972 Miami Dolphins declined an invite from President Obama in 2013, citing political differences, as did Super Bowl winning Baltimore Raven and ex-Vikings offensive lineman Matt Birk because of Obama's support for Planned Parenthood.

Baseball star Manny Ramirez didn't show up for a visit to President George W. Bush, while Minnesota's own Tom Lehman refused to visit President Bill Clinton, calling him a "draft-dodging baby killer," according to The Week.

Michael Jordan meanwhile skipped out on a visit to President George Bush in 1991.

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