Did The Brooklyn Nets Treat Kyrie Irving Fairly?

Did The Brooklyn Nets Treat Kyrie Irving Fairly?

In the same week that nearly three-quarters of the league’s general managers picked them to win the NBA Finals, the Brooklyn Nets announced that point guard Kyrie Irving will not be allowed to play with the team until he is vaccinated for Covid. Their announcement also came on the heels of the NBA and the Players’ Association agreeing that any player who is unable to play games because they are not vaccinated will not be paid that portion of their salary. With the team’s front office and coaching staff ready to move on from a “tenuous situation,” the Brooklyn Nets are ready to play the 2021-22 season without Kyrie Irving … but did they treat their player fairly? 

Nets GM Sean Marks says Brooklyn has decided Kyrie Irving may not practice or play with the group until he can be a “full participant.” pic.twitter.com/ton8xdCEX9

— Malika Andrews (@malika_andrews) October 12, 2021

The Brooklyn Nets were looking at playing the upcoming season without Kyrie Irving for all 41 of their home games plus their two road games against the New York Knicks all because local officials have mandated that all local players be vaccinated for Covid. The team would also not be able to have Irving attend practices while the team was in New York City for the same local mandate, leaving the team to take the difficult option of not having Irving at all this season.

Say what you want about Kyrie Irving the person since his recent history has been well documented, leading many in the media like ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith to call for him to retire. Yet, all Irving is doing is exercising the same right that thousands of others have across the country of not putting their personal health decisions behind their job.

Many across New York have given up their jobs in hospital or other health care professions all because they didn’t want to receive a Covid vaccination. Is their choice any better or worse than what Kyrie Irving did? On the other side of that conversation lies the Brooklyn Nets, who also had a choice to make and made the one that gave them consistency throughout the 2021-22 season, playing without Irving rather than having two different teams take the court during the year.

Everyone in this situation did what they felt was best for themselves, either as a person in the case of Irving, or as a team in the case of the Nets. No one was at fault for doing what was best for them, and Irving’s willingness to forfeit nearly $35 Million dollar is something that should not go overlooked.

True, unlike those who worked in many hospitals and walked away from their jobs rather than give up their personal choice to vaccinate, Irving can afford to live the rest of his life without the money he is leaving behind. Yet, also unlike those health care professional, Kyrie Irving will forever be linked to this issue and, for better or worse, his legacy as a person and NBA player will always carry this footnote for people in the future to judge.

Enjoy your year off Mr. Irving, let’s now see how the Brooklyn Nets play without you on the court. Because the last thing Kyrie should want to see is his team do well this season, since, if they do reach the NBA Finals, the value of Irving the player drops to zero, and his team is stuck with him for one more season. 

 

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Did The Brooklyn Nets Treat Kyrie Irving Fairly? | TooAthletic.com



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