Kyrie Irving Benched: Brooklyn Nets Take Solid Stance on Covid Vaccination

Seven-time NBA All-Star player Kyrie Irving has created headlines by not updating his Covid vaccination status. He hasn’t told his status to his club and also stayed silent when confronted by media and fans, stating privacy issues as the reason for his silence.

Kyrie Irving, who is also a three-time member of the All-NBA team, had been a bit-part player for the Nets this season so far. And his dismal form will not get any better as all things suggest he’ll be out of the court for some time now, because of his negligence of the Covid situation.

Because of the Covid restrictions, most NBA fans are trying to watch their favorite teams in action from the comfort of their homes, with most US basketball stadiums yet to open in full capacity. You can catch all the action at home on ESPN and TNT. You can also stream all the NBA games on Amazon Fire TV Stick.

The announcement came on Tuesday from Brooklyn Nets general manager, Sean Marks. He confirmed that the star player will not be able to even take part in practice before he is fully updated with the latest Covid protocols in the NBA. Before this confirmation, a New York City Hall official confused the team and its fans by stating that Kyrie Irving will be able to take part in team training, as a part-time player for the franchise. But the confirmation from Brooklyn Nets confirms that the official was completely wrong.

In his statement, Sean Marks said:

“Given the evolving nature of the situation and after thorough deliberation, we have decided Kyrie Irving will not play or practice with the team until he is eligible to be a full participant.”

Talking about the part-time availability of players, Marks also touched on the history and tradition of the team. He continued:

“Kyrie has made a personal choice, and we respect his individual right to choose. Currently, the choice restricts his ability to be a full-time member of the team, and we will not permit any member of our team to participate with part-time availability. It is imperative that we continue to build chemistry as a team and remain true to our long-established values of togetherness and sacrifice.”

Born in Australia, Kyrie Irving has been a household name for NBA fans for many years now. He was the ace player for the Cleveland Cavaliers, where he spent the best part of seven years of his career, probably the best seven. He also won the NBA championship with the Cavaliers in 2016. He moved to Brooklyn Nets in 2019, where he has failed to sustain a good run of form till now.

Kyrie Irving has also represented the USA at the international level, winning several trophies and medals, including a gold medal at the Rio Olympics in 2016, the Basketball World Cup 2014 in Spain, and the FIBA Americas U18 Championship in 2010. His staying away from the game, even for a brief period of time, is frustrating for himself, his fans, and the Basketball fraternity in the US.

Brooklyn Nets are currently positioned 6th in the NBA standings, with a W-L of 2-1. They have proper players, including guards and forwards, in their large roster, which includes fan-favorite names such as Jevon Carter, James Harden, Joe Harris, Patty Mills, Kevin Durant, Blake Griffin, etc. Kyrie Irving could also be high on this list of top players.

The Brooklyn Nets have been scoring enough points this season, but the problem has been at the other end. They have the second-best Points Per Game (PPG) record this season, which stands at 118.6. But, their Rebounds Per Game stats are very poor (14th amongst all teams), currently standing at only 44.4. This resounding failure can be attributed to the lack of form from Kyrie Irving and his fellow guards in the team.

The Nets will now go on to face the Minnesota Timberwolves on Thursday, October 14, without Kyrie Irving.