Kyrie Irving’s prolonged absence from the Brooklyn Nets has been one of many largest tales of the NBA season. We wrote an explainer on how Kyrie and the Nets obtained into this example, however the brief model appears to be like like this: New York Metropolis handed an government order that mandated NBA gamers on the Nets and Knicks should obtain the Covid vaccine to play in house video games, Irving refused to get vaccinated, and the Nets determined to maintain him away from the group till reversing course lately and permitting him to play in highway video games solely.
This has been some of the weird tales within the latest historical past of the league, and it’s about to take one other unusual flip. Irving can apparently play in house video games for the Nets this season as long as he or his group is prepared to pay a small positive.
In response to Stefan Bondy of the New York Day by day Information, the penalty for breaking former mayor Invoice de Blasio’s government order caps out at a $5K positive. That’s nothing for billionaire Nets proprietor Joe Tsai, or for Irving himself.
Irving continues to be on a “highway video games solely” schedule in the course of the begin of his return to the Nets. He’s performed two video games to date, and he scored 22 factors in every. The Nets have been superior all 12 months even with out Irving taking part in till lately. Brooklyn at present sits No. 2 within the Jap Convention behind the Chicago Bulls.
The Nets haven’t introduced in the event that they’d be prepared to pay the positive to let Irving return.
Kyrie Irving ought to nonetheless get the vaccine, as a result of everybody ought to get it
The Covid vaccines are a large achievement for humanity. They’re protected and efficient. Each different member of the Nets and Knicks is vaccinated. Irving ought to cease being cussed and simply get the jab. It’s not nearly conserving himself protected — it’s about conserving everybody in New York Metropolis protected, too, and setting a great instance for the individuals who look as much as him.
Irving has by no means given a smart purpose for refusing to get the vaccine. His refusal to do it has made him a political pawn for a sure part of the inhabitants, and that’s not one thing Kyrie needs to be related to. Irving would possibly fancy himself as a freethinker, however on this occasion he’s being ignorant.
The Nets shouldn’t let Kyrie play house video games till he’s vaccinated
The optics of a billionaire proprietor and a participant who’s a millionaire many instances over coming collectively to interrupt a city-wide rule goes to be a horrible look. Is it proper for the rich to be above the legal guidelines? After all not. It’s rubbish.
A $5K fan is a large deterrent for any regular particular person that desires to interrupt the NYC mandate. Tsai and Irving should not regular folks. They’re ridiculously wealthy. Simply because the positive can be chump change for them doesn’t make it proper.
Hopefully the Nets maintain sturdy and don’t let Irving play house video games till he’s vaccinated. After all, the Nets additionally stated they have been going to maintain Irving away from the group this season till he was vaccinated earlier than they flip-flopped and allowed him to return for highway video games.
With Kevin Durant, James Harden, and Irving on the ground, the Nets can be the favorites to win the championship, as was the case earlier than the season. Should you consider within the idea of karma or “basketball gods,” it positive looks like taking part in Irving in house video games and paying the positive would invite unhealthy luck. Heck, the Nets might win the title anyway this 12 months even when Kyrie is barely taking part in highway video games.
We don’t know if the Nets will enable Kyrie to return for house video games by paying the positive. This example simply retains getting weirder. The place it goes subsequent is anybody’s guess.