Brooklyn Nets guard Kyrie Irving revealed on his Instagram profile on Wednesday night that he had not received the vaccine against COVID 19.
Irving took to Instagram after he was banned from practicing and playing games because of not getting vaccinated for COVID-19.
Vaccination is an obligation for home team players in New York City.
Respect my privacy!
On Sept. 27, at the NBA Media Day, Irving (via videoconference) declined to comment on his vaccination status, saying he would like it to remain his private matter but also emphasized that he would be present with his team players every day as one of the team leaders.
He stressed that the focus must be on important things and that he did not want drama and distraction to be created around his vaccination.
Regarding the whole situation, Nets general manager Sean Marks said on Tuesday that the club respects the right to Irving’s personal choice, but that that choice limits him from being a permanent member of the team.
He also stated that it is important for everyone in the club to remain loyal to the long-established values of togetherness and renunciation, concluding that the goals for the season have not changed, and to achieve those goals it is necessary that all team members go in the same direction.
Marks added that the decision to ban Irving from practicing and playing was made by him and club owner Joe Tsai and that it shall remain in force until Irving receives at least one dose of the vaccine.
As for Irving’s monetary loss because of his non-playing, Marks said that Irving will lose the earnings he was supposed to make by playing home games.
ESPN’s Bobby Marks and Tim Bontemps have calculated that Irving could lose over $ 17 million if he misses all home games by the end of the season.
He was promised exemption
Consequently, Irving posted a video via his Instagram profile stating that no one should be forced to do anything with their body adding that he was promised a vaccination exemption before the start of the season and that he would not be forced to be vaccinated.
He also stated that he hopes to return to the Nets and that his decision not to receive the vaccine is a matter of his personal choice and begs everyone to respect his decision.
In his address, Irving stated that this is not a political message, that he does not resent the Nets for banning him from playing or resent his teammates for anything.
He also said added how he respects doctors who fight for people’s lives, that he respects the decisions of those who are vaccinated, but also those who, like him, do not want to be vaccinated.
Irving also referred to Marks’s statements about winning the championship, asking in disbelief if there really is someone who thinks he wants to give up winning the championship or that he wants to give up his job and not be together with his teammates with whom he grew and learned with.
In his Instagram address, Irving concluded that the vaccination problem would not force him to give up playing.