‘I don’t feel guilty’

The Brooklyn Nets’ losing streak swelled to 11 games on Saturday after a short rally against the Miami Heat. After a busy week marked by the James Harden deal, the Nets fell short once again despite Kyrie Irving’s best efforts to keep the team playing with 18 points in the fourth half.


When the Nets look to skateboarding ahead of the All-Star break, they will have to do so without Irving, who won’t be available to play in each of the team’s subsequent games resulting in a halftime break due to team regulations. New York City around people who have not been immunized against COVID-19.

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After the loss in Miami, Irving was asked if he felt guilty not being available for home games, a question the 29-year-old wasn’t too pleased to receive.

“Don’t bring your personal feelings in here,” Irving retorted. “Come on, puppeteers.”

Irving continued, adding that he doesn’t feel guilty because it’s a product of his circumstances as an athlete in New York City:

We come back here. Play your communication game with others, man. Please, I understand there’s a lot going on in the world and I’m here as a human being just like you, man. Please respect my boundaries, man, that’s all I ask. I don’t feel guilty at all, I’m the only player facing this in New York City because I play there – if I were anywhere else in another city, it would probably be. not the same situation but because I’m there, you have Eric Adams, you have a New York mission, you have things going on that real life circumstances don’t just affect me, man.

Irving later admitted that he had been the subject of a number of jokes on and off the internet, admitting TNT’s Charles Barkley nicknamed him “Half-Man/Half-A-Season” as a play on Vince Carter’s “Half-Man/Half-Amazing” nickname.

“In public spaces, I’ve noticed that people like to make jokes about what’s going on,” Irving said. “And ‘half game’ or ‘half man’ – whatever. My family has to watch some of that, my teammates have to watch some of that.”

Irving, who admits he’s still “tired” after missing his first 35 games of the season, is currently averaging 24.1 points, 5.4 assists and 4.8 rebounds over 14 his first match.

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With Kevin Durant still out injured and Ben Simmons ramping up conditions in preparation for his season debut, the Nets need Irving’s contribution to stand a chance of winning. As the team splits, Irving’s absence leading up to the All-Star break will feel almost twice as long.

Nets schedule 2021-22

As it stands, Irving is eligible to play just one of the Nets’ next eight games.

Because a road match against the Knicks takes place in New York City, the same questline applies to Irving. He is unable to play in the road game against the Raptors due to an Ontario order regarding athletes who have not been vaccinated against COVID-19.

Day Protest Time National Television Can Irving play?
February 14th compared to kings 7:30 pm Is not
February 16th at Knicks 7:30 pm ESPN Is not
February 17 compared to witches 7:30 pm Is not
February 20 NBA All-Star Game 20:00 TNT
February 24th versus the Celtics 7:30 pm TNT Is not
February 26 at Bucks 8.30pm ABC It’s correct
February 28th compared to the Raptors 7:30 pm Is not
March 1 at Raptors 7:30 pm Is not
March 3 compared to heat 8:30 TNT Is not

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