Dolphins WR Kenny Stills says he's receiving death threats as situation over owner's Donald Trump support continues to combust

Alex Reimer
August 09, 2019 - 10:41 am
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Dolphins wide receiver Kenny Stills says he’s received death threats after publicly criticizing team owner Stephen Ross for hosting a top-dollar fundraiser in the Hamptons for President Donald Trump’s reelection campaign. 

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New head coach Brian Flores, meanwhile, says he wishes Stills took his concerns to Ross privately. 

The whole firestorm in Miami started earlier this week, when it was revealed Ross, who also owns SoulCycle and the upscale gym, Equinox, will be hosting a lavish fundraiser for Trump at his Hamptons home later the month. Each guest will donate up to $250,000 to the president’s campaign. 

Stills, one of the league’s more outspoken player activists, said on Twitter Ross’ support for Trump does not jive with his RISE initiative, an organization that says it’s dedicated to advancing racial equality in sports. 

The wideout’s reaction prompted the Dolphins’ owner to release a statement, in which he says he disagrees with Trump, his longtime friend, on many topics. “I have known Donald Trump for 40 years, and while we agree on some issues, we strongly disagree on many others and I have never been bashful about expressing my opinions,” Ross writes.

It appears as if both Stills and Ross are handling the situation maturely. It’s doubtful the controversy will affect the Dolphins on the field this season. 

Still, the episode reflects a remarkable moment for the NFL. Players seemingly feel more emboldened than ever, and are willing to directly challenge authority. That is a good development.

It will be interesting to see if Robert Kraft experiences any sort of backlash from his players this season for his close relationship with the president. So far, that hasn’t been the case, even as the Patriots’ owner has flown on Air Force One and recently dined at the White House

Related: Apparently, Adam Gase believes formula to beating Bill Belichick includes sniffing smelling salts and sleep deprivation