After he was suspended indefinitely for his social media posts about a book containing anti-Semitic ideas and his perceived lack of action afterward, some NBA general managers have speculated that his career may be over. However, after serving an eight-game suspension and fulfilling six conditions set by the Brooklyn Nets organization, Kyrie Irving now returns to the team, helping the Nets to a victory over the Memphis Grizzlies (127-115) on Sunday night. with 14 points and five rebounds in 26 minutes of play.
“I don’t support anything approaching hate speech or anti-Semitism or anything that goes against the human race,” Irving said earlier on Sunday. “I think we should all have the opportunity to speak for ourselves when things are being assumed about us and I think it was necessary for me to stand here and take responsibility for my actions because there was a way I should have handled all of this and as I look back and reflect on when I had the opportunity to express my deepest regrets to anyone who felt threatened or hurt by what I posted, it was not my intention at all.
Some groups were seen protesting outside the Barclays Center in Brooklyn ahead of Sunday’s game, handing out flyers with “The Truth About Anti-Semitism” headlined. Asked about the incident, Irving replied that he was there to focus on the game.
“It felt good. I missed my teammates, I missed the coaching staff,” Irving said after the game. “It felt good to sideline this game. Now we can go ahead with the rest of the season.
His teammates and coaches were happy to welcome him back with Kevin Durant saying, “We understand the circumstances around our game now. Our league is getting bigger there’s so much attention on it so every little thing can explode these days so as much as we can focus on the ball game and keep growing as a team I think our fans can support that. I think you will also take care of it. So we want to keep accumulating good days, see what happens.
“It’s Kyrie, he’s so talented,” continues Ben Simmons. “Obviously he’s working on the grip again, trying to feel the ball, but he’s so talented it’s easy to play with him.”
A statement from the NBPA.
? : https://t.co/rAUP7jilM3 pic.twitter.com/mtSROtkBYi
— NBPA (@TheNBPA) November 20, 2022
“I have no hatred in my heart for Jewish people or anyone who identifies as Jewish. I’m not anti-Jewish or anything…I’m not anyone’s idol, but I’m a human being who wants to make an impact and change.
Kyrie Irving apologizespic.twitter.com/ixuYmmtm2t
—ClutchPoints (@ClutchPointsApp) November 19, 2022
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