President Trump suddenly called off the Philadelphia Eagles' visit to the White House after the team’s Super Bowl win. After President Trump demanded the entire Eagles team to stand during the National Anthem, many of the players and coaches of the team stated they would boycott the visit.
In a statement President Trump released on Monday, June 4:"The Philadelphia Eagles are unable to come to the White House with their full team to be celebrated tomorrow," he continues, "They disagree with their president because he insists that they proudly stand for the National Anthem, hand on heart, in hour of the great men and women of military and the people of our country."
White House officials stated that fewer than 10 members of the teams were planning to attend the event on Tuesday in spite of the weeks of planning. Instead of the team being present at the ceremony, President Trump said that the 1,000 fans originally invited would still be allowed and welcomed to the White House, but instead the celebration would honor "our great country, pay tribute to the heroes who fight to protect it, and loudly and proudly play the National Anthem."
In terms of athletes skipping the White House victory ceremonies, it is not uncommon. After the New England Patriots' win, a distinct number of players from the team skipped the celebration. Michael Jordan, of the Chicago Bulls, was not present at the White House celebration with President George H. W. Bush in 1991. However, it is rare that a conflict between the president and the players reaches such an extreme level.