(Laughs.) Do you address police brutality? And so there will be another one looking forward for the 2021 season, and figuring out within our communities too, you know, within DC what can we do? It was not an easy decision for the 28-year-old to make. Both see their athletic careers evolving to permanently include activism. follow suit, leading to murder charges against three white men. And then, to see nothing be done afterwards, it's really hard, and it's really hard for young 16 17, 18-year-old kids to deal with, but these two women in particular, they rose up. “They are helping to force a conversation.”, He added, “They understand the tremendous influence they have to inspire an evolution in hearts and minds, and create change.”, John Thompson III, who leads athlete development and engagement for Monumental Basketball, said Beal and Cloud are “extremely bright, smart and are very passionate about the times in which we live in.”, He added: “Both of them have an understanding that they have a voice, they have a platform, they can move the needle and affect people with their thoughts and their energy and they understand that they have that responsibility to do that.”. Cloud spoke at a Juneteenth rally this summer alongside Beal. And so when you can align with those right people in those rights plans, again, it makes your job of fighting this big beast of reform, it makes it a lot easier. “When I’m with the Mystics I want to be 100 percent in, focused on winning the championship, and with the community I’m the same way,” she said. Sheâs discussing basketball. So, what did you see from them in the Bubble, and what excites you the most about getting back on the court with them? So while it's nice for me, I didn't need it, but I'm so humbled to be on it, and to be a part of such a badass group that figured out how to not only help their community, especially during a pandemic. “I’m from Philadelphia, and we’re one of the worst cities right now when it comes to violence,” she said. Underdog story, Philly-born and bred, social activist. Natasha Cloud is not discussing the threats she has received because of her outspoken activism on social justice issues. I'm really excited for this opportunity to work with them, and it's amazing when you can line up with the right companies and the right brands that have the same morals and values, and the passion that you have for making not only your community better but this country better and this world better. How the WNBA ignited social activism in sports. So, (it) lets you know immediately that we have a lot more work to do, and lets you know where that school stands when it comes to equity racially. Alex and Natasha talk about her political activism, coming out story, and the inauguration of Joe Biden. For now, she is focused on expanding her social justice work. So it's a beautiful thing to see, and it's important for us as WNBA players to continue this fight because we know these younger players are watching, they're learning, they're figuring out how to change the culture around them and that's so important. Cloud said she plans to rejoin the Mystics in 2021. As a new face of Hennessy, the cognac brand that has long put money and energy into supporting minority communities in this country, Cloud is continuing that work. Washington Mystics star Natasha Cloud signed a sneaker deal with Converse, making her the first female basketball player to join the brand. © 2021 Forbes Media LLC. This WNBA player led her team to the 2019 Championships and is an inspiring, sacrificial player with an unorthodox story. It was so humbling. I did just want to ask if you've been in contact with the two young girls from American Heritage school about the latest with their situation and if there's anything else you wanted to say about how they were treated. Hours later, Cloud saw her colleagues in the W.N.B.A. So, the more that we can join together, the more that we can bring in our NBA counterparts, the more that we can bring in brands like Hennessy that believe in the movement, the better we're going to be. And when you align with the right people, it makes your job a lot easier. What do you think the next iteration of your work looks like after the attention that so many of you were able to draw and the powerful work that so many of you were able to do this year? That's been a big push for me, is representation matters. They were going to wear their t-shirts and if they were going to cancel the game, they were going to cancel the game, but they intended to hold their ground and hold their stance and try to create change within their community there at that school. In an announcement that was supposed to be made a week ago, Natasha Cloud is the newest face of Converse. That influence has been cultivated through a unique relationship between the Mystics and the Wizards. Of all the professional athletes who have spoken out in 2020 about systemic racism and the inequities in American society, few have stuck their necks out like Natasha Cloud. Converse is splashing back into the basketball shoe scene by signing Washington Mystics guard Natasha Cloud as much for her social justice activism as her championship winning talents. My parents are older, so they're a little bit emotional. I love our team. Without taking a single step on a WNBA court this season, Washington Mystics' Natasha Cloud had as much of an impact on public discourse surrounding women's basketball as any player in the league. Not only from the workload that I was taking on but also it directly affects me; it directly affects my wife. team. I hope they give you a bottle or something to give to dad. But I didn't expect it to be what it was; I mean, it was exhausting. We just came off a championship and, especially because they’re struggling right now, it’s really hard to sit and watch and not feel like, man, if I was there I feel like I could make a little bit of a difference. It's who they are as well. But like you said, from the standpoint of my morals and values, who I am as a person, who I've become in my career, Hennessy's been that. My dad is equally excited because I got my dark liquor drinking from him. They went in there to yes, play, but also to fight for social reform, and to use that platform, use that TV time to make a difference, and they did. It’s the only move.’, “They set the example, and the rest of the league followed,” continued Beal, who is not at the N.B.A. Beal has been focused on voter outreach, but he said there was also a need to address police brutality. Staff Writer, The Atlantic. Fridayâs march was coordinated by Mystics guard Natasha Cloud, who reached out to Beal and his teammates. And so there’s an emotional aspect of it that we feel differently, so every time that I have to have a hard dialogue, it’s draining for me because it takes so much emotion out of me.