ESPN will not air national anthem before Monday Night Football

Credit: Mike Windle

Credit: Mike Windle

ESPN will not air the national anthem before Monday Night Football games, network officials said Friday.

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"We generally have not broadcasted the anthem and I don't think that will change this year," network president Jimmy Pitaro told Axios. "Our plan going into this year is to not broadcast the anthem."

The network aired the national anthem three times last season, a moment of silence after the Houston hurricane and the Las Vegas shooting as well as at the Dallas vs. Arizona game, Axios reported.

The national anthem has intertwined sports with politics after Colin Kaepernick started kneeling two years ago to protest racial inequalities in the United States during performances of “The Star Spangled Banner.” Numerous other athletes in the NFL as well as other sports have also taken up the practice since then. Creating further political hay of the issue, President Donald Trump has tweeted multiple times about it.

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