NBA 2020-21: The Brooklyn Nets released the following statement from GM Sean Marks about Kyrie Irving on Tuesday:
“We are aware of a video on social media featuring Kyrie Irving at a family gathering. We are reviewing the circumstances with both Kyrie and the NBA in order to determine compliance with health and safety protocols.
Kyrie remains away from the team due to personal reasons. The date of his return has yet to be finalized. In the meantime, we will continue to stay focused on our organizational goals.
Kyrie will have the opportunity to address his absence when he is ready to do so.”
Statement from Brooklyn Nets General Manager Sean Marks: pic.twitter.com/2obJ4zwzgU
— Brooklyn Nets (@BrooklynNets) January 12, 2021
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Kyrie Irving was in the news after refusing to speak to the media before the start of the season:
Brooklyn Nets guard Kyrie Irving met with reporters for the first time this season after being fined $25,000 for refusing to attend media day. He broke his silence and talked about Steve Nash and James Harden.
Irving and the Nets organization each received the $25K fine. NBA says: “The fines result from Irving’s refusal on several occasions this week to participate in team media availability.”
Kyrie Irving on IG. pic.twitter.com/hTtRsLC29s
— HoopsHype (@hoopshype) December 11, 2020
“I am here for Peace, Love, and Greatness,” Irving wrote. “So stop distracting me and my team, and appreciate the Art. We move differently over here. I do not talk to Pawns. My attention is worth more.“
Irving also discussed comments from the ETCs podcast in October, walking back the idea that the Nets don’t have a “head” coach after hiring Steve Nash. Irving and Kevin Durant said on the podcast they expect the coaching to be a collaborative effort.
“I think I got to take back my comments from a few months ago,” Irving said.
Nash, who has no coaching experience aside from a part-time player development role with the Golden State Warriors from 2015-17, was hired in September to take over the reins of the franchise.
The move was seen as one largely at the direction of Durant and Irving. Durant and Nash developed a powerful connection during their lone season in Golden State.
Nash has acknowledged on numerous instants that his first head-coaching gig will include him studying on the fly. Mike D’Antoni was brought in to help lead the offense and Jacque Vaughn, who ended last season as the team’s interim coach, will run the defense, leaving the personable Nash’s biggest responsibility be the egos of his players.
That effort could become even more important if the Nets find a way to acquire James Harden, who has made Brooklyn his priority after requesting a trade from Houston. Irving briefly discussed the Harden rumors, saying that he only wants Harden to be happy.
James Harden trade according to Kyrie Irving
The Rockets have yet to find friction with the Nets or Philadelphia 76ers, the other widely reported suitor, in trade talks.
Irving has formed a tense relationship with the media across his nine-year career, and his discontentment with journalists was once again evident in his latest Instagram post.
In March 2019, he told Yahoo Sports’ Chris Haynes he felt the group manufactured drama but admitted learning to deal with the attention better as part of his growth as a star player.
The Nets and Kyrie Irving each dinged $25K for failing to meet with the media on several occasions during training camp. pic.twitter.com/XLG2ZW7d6u
— Bobby Marks (@BobbyMarks42) December 11, 2020
NBA teams are going through media week where players and coaches are making themselves available to speak to the media ahead of training camp starting this weekend.
Irving skipped out on that duty on Friday. Instead of talking to the media, he left a statement with a Nets spokesperson who passed it on to the media.
What did Kyrie say in the statement?
“I am committed to showing up to work every day, ready to have fun, compete, perform, and win championships alongside my teammates and colleagues in the Nets organization. My goal this season is to let my work on and off the court speak for itself. Life hit differently this year and it requires us, it requires me, to move differently. So, this is the beginning of that change.”
Kyrie Irving issued a statement that says, in part: “My goal this season is to let my work on and off the court speak for itself.”
He said he is issuing this statement instead of speaking with reporters. pic.twitter.com/ninUzAnhzC
— Malika Andrews (@malika_andrews) December 4, 2020
The tentative NBA schedule calendar for the 2020-21 season:
• Dec. 11-19, 2020: Preseason games
• Dec. 22, 2020 – March 4, 2021: First Half of regular season
• March 5-10, 2021: All-Star break
• March 11 – May 16, 2021: Second Half of regular season
• May 18-21, 2021: Play-In Tournament
• May 22 – July 22, 2021: 2021 NBA Playoffs