- The two Michigan musicians are among the most politically vocal
- Eminem criticized Trump last week in a freestyle rap while Kid Rock has met with Trump in the Oval Office
- Pistons' coach Stan Van Gundy suggested Eminem's appearance made a "statement"
Both were shown on the video screen at the game. Fans cheered as Eminem asked the crowd to "make some noise" for the team's first game in its new arena as his song "Lose Yourself" played. When Kid Rock was shown on the screen, however, he was booed, according to the Detroit Free Press
Unlike the NFL, NBA rules prohibit players from kneeling during the National Anthem, but Pistons' coach Stan Van Gundy said Eminem's appearance still sent a message.
"Without making a statement, they were able to make a statement," he said.
Last Thursday, Eminem slammed President Donald Trump in a freestyle rap
that aired at the BET Hip-Hop Awards. Eminem called Trump a "racist 94-year-old grandpa" and a "kamikaze that will probably cause a nuclear holocaust." Trump has not responded.
Kid Rock, however, has been supportive of Trump, meeting him in the Oval Office in April
with Sarah Palin and Ted Nugent. He's also floated a possible Senate run, selling "Kid Rock for Senate" merchandise in July before putting a decision on hold and saying he would promote voter registration. He played several shows at Little Caesars Arena earlier this year, offering fans a chance to register at the venue.
Although NBA players can't kneel for the anthem, the Cleveland Cavaliers locked arms during the anthem before their opening game Tuesday, and LeBron James wore black Nike shoes that said "Equality" on the back.