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#pounditSaturday, April 13, 2024

Report: Kyrie Irving not communicating directly with Nets

Kyrie Irving in warmups

Jan 15, 2020; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; Brooklyn Nets guard Kyrie Irving (11) stands for the anthem before a game against the Philadelphia 76ers at Wells Fargo Center. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Kyrie Irving’s refusal to apologize for promoting an antisemitic film has been a major problem for the Brooklyn Nets, albeit one they tried to fix before ultimately suspending him on Thursday. The problem for the Nets is that apparently, Irving himself was not returning their messages.

In a lengthy story about what went into the decision to suspend Irving, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski and Ramona Shelburne reported Friday that the 30-year-old guard has not directly communicated with Nets leadership since the controversy erupted last Saturday. Nets owner Joe Tsai spent nearly a week attempting to have a direct dialogue with Irving, but the guard did not return any of Tsai’s text messages.

The rest of the organization was not able to speak directly to Irving, either. The report states that all communication the Nets had with Irving was funneled through his agent and stepmother, Shetellia Riley-Irving. Even setting up a joint statement with the Anti-Defamation League was done without directly communicating with Irving.

Ultimately, the Nets were left with no choice but to suspend Irving for at least five games for his actions. It certainly sounds as though Tsai was quite patient with his star guard and offered Irving every chance to apologize, but could not even get to Irving directly. That certainly speaks poorly to relations between the player and organization.

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