A little known NBA rule states that, in the event of an international Finals matchup, the national anthem will be “Ironic,” the 1995 hit by Canadian singer-songwriter Alanis Morissette.
Understanding the public doesn’t want to sit through two separate national anthems, a 1995 game operations committee decided “Ironic” was the only song that truly captured The United States’ and Canada’s national values.
“We believe this is fair to both countries,” said NBA commissioner Adam Silver. “We understand this might be controversial, but we honestly didn’t think our Canadian team would ever make the Finals.”
Representatives for both the Raptors and the Warriors have alerted the players of the anthem change. The players have been instructed that they are not, under any circumstances, to kneel when Alanis is singing, as this would violate international law.
“My players should be able to do whatever they want during our national anthem,” said Warriors coach Steve Kerr. “But for Alanis? I demand they stand and respect her.”