NBA 2K players given ‘Black Lives Matter’ and ‘I Can’t Breathe’ shirts in honour of George Floyd

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NBA 2K paused online play for two hours on Thursday to recognise George Floyd’s memorial service in Minneapolis.

Online play was halted in the game from 2-4 p.m. ET while a service was ongoing.

The Neighborhood, a game mode where players can roam freely and interact with others, remained playable. Players were provided with free t-shirts for their avatars to wear that read ‘Black Lives Matters’ and ‘I Can’t Breathe’.

"We continue to be inspired and heartened by our community members' creativity in expressing themselves during difficult times," 2K said in a statement to ESPN.

"As such, we wanted to offer the Neighborhood as a space to gather and connect for those who found it a meaningful and helpful outlet."

2K this week announced plans and financial contributions to help fight racism.

"This week we muted our channel out of respect for what's going on in the world," the company said on Twitter.

"We are increasing funding for our 2K foundations program by an additional $1M and expanding its mission to help fight racial injustice and inequalities in black communities across the globe. Black Lives Matter."

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EA, Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo have all released statements calling for an end to racism.

NBA 2K wasn’t the only game to go offline. Rockstar Games closed access to Grand Theft Auto Online and Red Dead Online for two hours to honour Floyd, who was killed in police custody.

Rockstar Games and 2K Games are both owned by Take-Two Interactive.

Floyd’s tragic death has sparked mass protests around the world against police brutality and the injustices that black people face.

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