The Brooklyn Nets finally suspended star point guard Kyrie Irving on Thursday after Irving refused to explicitly apologize for sharing an antisemitic film during media availability earlier in the week.
“I cannot be antisemitic if I know where I come from,” was all Irving would say.
The Nets announced the suspension hours later:
“We were dismayed today, when given an opportunity in a media session, that Kyrie refused to unequivocally say he has no antisemitic beliefs, nor acknowledge specific hateful material in the film,” the Nets said in a statement. “This was not the first time he had the opportunity — but failed — to clarify. Such failure to disavow antisemitism when given a clear opportunity to do so is deeply disturbing, is against the values of our organization, and constitutes conduct detrimental to the team. Accordingly, we are of the view that he is currently unfit to be associated with the Brooklyn Nets.”
Irving will have to meet a series of unspecified team conditions to returning to play. It’s reasonable to think he would miss at least the next five Nets games. If that’s true, Irving will lose over $2 million in wages.
Dividing Irving's $35.9 million by 82 games, a suspension without pay amounts to $2.2 million. Irving lost $17 million last season after he refused to get vaxxed under the city mandate.
— NetsDaily (@NetsDaily) November 4, 2022
Not out of the question that Irving would lose over $20 million total in the last two seasons if he misses more than five games, after missing most of last season refusing to get vaccinated for COVID-19.
Irving has since apologized.
The Nets are next in action Friday night when they head to the nation’s capital to face the Washington Wizards.