Kyrie Irving Suspended 5 Games; Team Says He’s ‘Currently Unfit to be Associated with the Brooklyn Nets’
Despite pledging to donate $500,000 to the Anti-Defamation League, after an outcry from NBA commissioner, Adam Silver, the Brooklyn Nets have suspended point guard Kyrie Irving for a minimum of five games.
The team released a statement after saying it would match Irving’s $500,000 pledge to the ADL.
“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. 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.”
Statement from the Brooklyn Nets pic.twitter.com/699px8XYpx
— Brooklyn Nets (@BrooklynNets) November 4, 2022
The announcement was made after NBA Commissioner Adam Silver criticized Irving for not offering “an unqualified apology.”
“Kyrie Irving made a reckless decision to post a link to a film containing deeply offensive antisemitic material.,” Silver said i a statement. “While we appreciate the fact that he agreed to work with the Brooklyn Nets and the Anti-Defamation League to combat antisemitism and other forms of discrimination, I am disappointed that he has not offered an unqualified apology and more specifically denounced the vile and harmful content contained in the film he chose to publicize. I will be meeting with Kyrie in person in the next week to discuss this situation.”
After being notified of the suspension, Irving took to his Instagram and offered the apology the higher-ups on the team and at the league office were seeking from him.
“To All Jewish families and Communities that are hurt and affected from my post, I am deeply sorry to have caused you pain, and I apologize. I initially reacted out of emotion to being unjustly labeled Anti-Semitic, instead of focusing on the healing process of my Jewish Brothers and Sisters that were hurt from the hateful remarks made in the Documentary. I want to clarify any confusion on where I stand fighting against Anti- semticism by apologizing for posting the documentary without context and a factual explanation outlining the specific beliefs in the Documentary I agreed with and disagreed with. I had no intentions to disrespect any Jewish cultural history regarding the Holocaust or perpetuate any hate. I am learning from this unfortunate event and hope we can find understanding between us all. I am no different than any other human being. I am a seeker of truth and knowledge, and I know who I Am.
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Previously, the 30-year-old NBA champion tweeted a link to Hebrews to Negroes: Wake Up Black America!, the 2018 film is based on the 2015 book. The book states that it “uncovers the true identity of the Children of Israel.” The Anti-Defamation League, along with several Jewish rights organizations like the American Jewish Congress, has stated the content of the movie is antisemitic.