Kyrie Irving forgoes COVID jabs and benches himself -- at least, not yet

It is difficult to find out where Kyrie Irving gets his vaccine information. We hope it isn't the same source that convinced him for a time that the Earth was flat.

Kyrie Irving forgoes COVID jabs and benches himself -- at least, not yet

True story.

It was not surprising that science had again tripped up the seven-time All-Star. The New York City COVID-19 vaccine mandate, which covers pro athletes, had forced Irving to play only road games. Irving was then given an ultimatum by the Brooklyn Nets: Get the shot. Take the 2021-22 season off.

Argument for a. It's quite simple. Irving is being paid $34 million annually by the Nets to play with James Harden and Kevin Durant, two of the most talented players in the game. This could help Brooklyn win an NBA championship. However, b. But b.)

Irving can remain on his couch all day and still make $16 million. Because Nets general manager Sean Marks, and Joe Tsai, the owner, decided that the "half-a loaf" approach was too disruptive. They said Irving would receive compensation for games on the road where he would have been eligible.

Marks stated at a press conference, "Will there be any pushback from Kyrie's camp?" "I'm certain that this isn't a decision they like. This is the choice Kyrie made, and he was fully aware of it.

Irving dodged questions about his vaccination status, saying that he had been vaccinated three weeks ago in Zoom interviews with reporters. "I think it's something I would love to keep private, work with my team, and move forward with the plan together."

Whatever the plan, Marks clarified that Irving, vice president of NBA Players Association, wasn't among the 96% who were vaccinated by the union. Marks stated that Irving would not be vaccinated if he had been.

It remains to be seen how much they will talk. It is worth noting that the NBA was the first major league to end its season in the midst of the pandemic. This happened just hours after the Commissioner Adam Silver received word that Rudy Gobert, the Utah Jazz's star, had been diagnosed with COVID-19. It was also the first league to create a single "bubble", to restart games, and the first to allow some fans to return to the stands. They are unlikely to change the rules.

Irving, a 29-year old engaging and curious man, does a lot behind the scenes charity work, but he also has a streak of being a contrarian. After fighting the league over the bubble setup, he skipped the Nets a few more times last season citing "personal reasons", only to be found partying. He has also dabbled with conspiracy theories in the past, most notably his 2017 podcast interview where he declared that "earth is flat".

Irving, as he is now, was coy about his listening habits and encouraged people "to do their own research." However, he is not qualified to judge the validity of vaccine studies. He'd rather be running a quick break during the final minutes of a big-game.

Big is a strong word. More than a few ex-NBA greats are now involved in the effort to convince Irving and the remaining vaccinated people to get the vaccine. Shaquille Ol'al, Charles Barkley, Shaquille O’Neal and Kareem AbdulJabbar have all framed the campaign as a responsibility to their teammates. Michael Jordan, the owner of Charlotte Hornets, stated that he was "in unison" with the league and a strong believer in science.

Irving should finish his search for advice soon, regardless of where he might be looking. It's rare to find his talent, so the opportunity to play with Durant and Harden in the NBA and add another title might not last long.

Irving is largely silent right now, possibly because he remembers the pain he felt following the flat-Earth episode. Irving tried to laugh it off, repeated it several months later in an interview with The New York Times and then laughed it off again before finally apologizing.

He said, "To all science teachers, everyone come up to me...I'm sorry." "I apologize. I apologize."

Silver, who was like Irving and went to Duke, took a lighthearted approach back then to the whole thing.

He said that Kyrie and he went to the same college. He may have taken different courses.

The commissioner was not amused when he saw one of the most popular players threaten to quit the game over a nearly-misguided understanding science.

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