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Kyrie Irving Suspended By The Nets After Failing To Apologize

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Image Credit: Phelan M Ebenhack/AP/Shutterstock

(UPDATE: 11/3/22 AT 8:45 P.M. ET): The Brooklyn Nets have reportedly suspended Kyrie after her refused to apologize for tweeting out a link to a film that featured antisemitic content. The organization released an official statement indicating that he would be suspended without pay for at least five games. Per Fox Sports, The team expressed their “dismay” at the NBA star’s refusal 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.”

The press release, which you can view HERE via Twitter, went on to state that his failure to “disavow antisemitism” is “deeply disturbing” and “against the values” of the organization. “We have determined that Kyrie will serve a suspension without pay until he satisfies a series of objective remedial measures that address the harmful impact of his conduct and the suspension period is no less than five games.”

(ORIGINAL STORY) NBA player Kyrie Irving is taking “full responsibility” for tweeting a link to Hebrews to Negroes: Wake Up Black America — a movie that is said to promote antisemitism — last week by teaming up with the Brooklyn Nets to help “eradicate hate” toward the Jewish community. The Brooklyn Nets star and his team announced on Nov. 2 that they will each donate $500,000 “toward causes and organizations that work to eradicate hate and intolerance in our communities.” The statement, issued on the official NBA website, also claimed the 30-year-old basketball pro will “work with ADL (the Anti-Defamation League), a nonprofit organization devoted to fighting antisemitism and all types of hate that undermine justice and fair treatment for every individual.”

In a personal statement along with the announcement, Kyrie said he opposes “all forms of hatred and oppression and [stands] strong with communities that are marginalized and impacted every day.” He continued, “I am aware of the negative impact of my post towards the Jewish community and I take responsibility. I do not believe everything said in the documentary was true or reflects my morals and principles. I am a human being learning from all walks of life and I intend to do so with an open mind and a willingness to listen. So from my family and I, we meant no harm to any one group, race or religion of people, and wish to only be a beacon of truth and light.”

Kyrie Irving
Kyrie Irving has expressed his regret for tweeting a link to a movie that has antisemitic undertones (Photo: Phelan M Ebenhack/AP/Shutterstock)

Kyrie originally tweeted the link on Oct. 27, and prompted the Brooklyn Nets owner Joe Tsai to condemn his action. “I want to sit down and make sure he understands this is hurtful to all of us, and as a man of faith, it is wrong to promote hate based on race, ethnicity or religion,” Tsai tweeted on Friday, Oct. 28. “This is bigger than basketball.”

The NBA also issued a statement against hate speech on Friday. “Hate speech of any kind is unacceptable and runs counter to the NBA’s values of equality, inclusion and respect,” a statement on its website read. “We believe we all have a role to play in ensuring such words or ideas, including antisemitic ones, are challenged and refuted and we will continue working with all members of the NBA community to ensure that everyone understands the impact of their words and actions.”

The following day, Kyrie appeared agitated after a reporter asked him about tweeting the link and equated the question to dehumanizing him, as seen in the press conference clip shared below. He also claimed that tweeting something doesn’t necessarily mean he’s promoting it when asked about an article by the far-right radio host Alex Jones to which he shared a link.

That same day, Kyrie declared that he is not antisemitic and supports all religions. “I am an OMNIST and I meant no disrespect to anyone’s religious beliefs,” he wrote. “The “Anti-Semitic” label that is being pushed on me is not justified and does not reflect the reality or truth I live in everyday. I embrace and want to learn from all walks of life and religions.”

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