By air, land, and sea, Russia has launched a devastating attack on Ukraine, an European democracy of 44 million people, and its forces are on the outskirts of the capital, Kyiv. For months, President Vladimir Putin denied he would invade his neighbor, but then he tore up a peace deal, sending forces across borders in Ukraine's north, east, and south. As the number of dead climbs, he stands accused of shattering the peace in Europe. What happens next could jeopardize the continent's entire security structure.
Most Russian athletes are promoting an anti-war message after the invasion of Ukraine, including one of Vladimir Putin's most visible supporters. Alexander Ovechkin (Ice Hockey Player) and Andrey Rublyov (Tennis Player) called for “No more war” in their first comments on the crisis in Ukraine. Andrey Rublyov wrote “No war please” on the camera after his tennis match as a way to show his thoughts to everyone who is watching the match at that moment.
IOC (International Olympics Committee) joins the sports backlash to the invasion of Ukraine by calling for all sporting events in Russia and Belarus to be canceled or moved. With Russian and Belarusian flags and anthems set to be banned after breaching the “Olympic Truce”. Also, UEFA announced that this year's Champions League final will no longer take place in St. Petersburg. It is now planned to be held in “Stade de France” in Paris to be played on the original date of May 28.
There is also a lot of reaction from NBA teams. The Sacramento Kings and the Denver Nuggets joined together before Thursday’s game to show their support for Ukraine and Ukrainian players after Russia’s recent invasion of the country. Players from both teams linked arms, amplifying a message of “NO WAR”. Kings center Alex Len is a native of Ukraine. Earlier on Thursday, Len and Raptors wing, Svi Mykhailiuk posted a joint statement concerning the recent attacks on their country.