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 got into this situation, 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 dwelling video games, Irving refused to get vaccinated, and the Nets determined to maintain him away from the crew 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 dwelling video games for the Nets this season as long as he or his crew is prepared to pay a small superb.
According to Stefan Bondy of the New York Daily News, the penalty for breaking former mayor Invoice de Blasio’s government order caps out at a $5K superb. That’s nothing for billionaire Nets proprietor Joe Tsai, or for Irving himself.
Irving remains to be on a “highway video games solely” schedule through the begin of his return to the Nets. He’s performed two video games to this point, and he scored 22 factors in every. The Nets have been superior all yr even with out Irving enjoying till lately. Brooklyn at present sits No. 2 within the Japanese Convention behind the Chicago Bulls.
The Nets haven’t introduced in the event that they’d be prepared to pay the superb 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 an enormous achievement for humanity. They’re secure 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 preserving himself secure — it’s about preserving everybody in New York Metropolis secure, too, and setting instance for the individuals who look as much as him.
Irving has by no means given a smart motive 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 may fancy himself as a freethinker, however on this occasion he’s being ignorant.
The Nets shouldn’t let Kyrie play dwelling video games till he’s vaccinated
The optics of a billionaire proprietor and a participant who’s a millionaire many occasions 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? In fact not. It’s rubbish.
A $5K fan is a large deterrent for any regular particular person that wishes to interrupt the NYC mandate. Tsai and Irving usually are not regular folks. They’re ridiculously wealthy. Simply because the superb could be chump change for them doesn’t make it proper.
Hopefully the Nets maintain robust and don’t let Irving play dwelling video games till he’s vaccinated. In fact, the Nets additionally stated they have been going to maintain Irving away from the crew 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 could be the favorites to win the championship, as was the case earlier than the season. In the event you imagine within the idea of karma or “basketball gods,” it positive looks as if enjoying Irving in dwelling video games and paying the superb would invite dangerous luck. Heck, the Nets may win the title anyway this yr even when Kyrie is barely enjoying highway video games.
We don’t know if the Nets will permit Kyrie to return for dwelling video games by paying the superb. This example simply retains getting weirder. The place it goes subsequent is anybody’s guess.