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K2 Sports Round-up: The Dodgers' next opponents and the NFL's kneeling controversy

by KPCC staff | Take Two®

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CARSON, CA - SEPTEMBER 24: Terrance Smith #48, Eric Fisher #72, Demetrius Harris #84, and Cameron Erving #75 of the Kansas City Chiefs is seen taking a knee before the game against the Los Angeles Chargers at the StubHub Center on September 24, 2017 in Carson, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images) Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images

The Dodgers aren't playing baseball at the moment, but tonight they might be playing a game of Pick Your Poison when it comes to their next opponents.  They already handily completed step one in making it to the World Series after they swept the Arizona Diamondbacks in the National League Divisional Championship.  Now LA waits to find out which team they'll be playing Saturday at Dodger Stadium: the Chicago Cubs or the Washington Nationals.

It all comes down to whether or not the Cubs can win their series tonight or if the Nationals can force a Game 5.

Brian Kamanetsky on who Dodgers fans should want to play in the NLCS

If you want the near 30-year World Series drought to come via the path that feels most earned where you take out the reigning World Series champions, you take the Cubs. And if you just want the most glitz and hype in the series, the omnipresence of Chicago's super fan, Bill Murray, you also want the Cubs. And I guarantee Major League Baseball wants the Cubs.  But if you're a Dodger fan looking for the relatively safest path to the World Series, I think you want the Nationals.

The NFL national anthem protests have gotten a lot of strong reactions, including from President Trump. Earlier this week, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones weighed in, saying that any of his players who do not stand for the anthem will not be allowed to play; a labor union in Texas also filed a complaint saying Jones violated the National Labor Relations Act.

All this is coming on the heels of NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell sending a letter to teams reminding them that the league's manual states players "should" stand at attention. Goodell wrote that the issue is "threatening to erode the unifying power of our game."

It's emotional on both sides, but it begs the question: If the NFL bans players from kneeling during the anthem, is it a violation of their first amendment rights? 

Erwin Chemerinsky, Dean of UC-Berkeley's School of Law weighs in on the constitutionality of the NFL requiring players to stand during the national anthem

"The First Amendment applies only to the government. The National Football League and the teams within it are all private entities so the First Amendment doesn't apply to it. If Congress were to pass a law preventing kneeling at football games, that would violate the First Amendment, but for the NFL to adopt such a rule doesn't raise any First Amendment question at all."​​

To hear more about the week in sports, click the blue play button above. 

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