Nets’ Kyrie Irving suspended at least 5 games, with apology

Nets’ Kyrie Irving suspended at least 5 games, with apology

The Brooklyn Nets are suspended Kyrie Irving for “no less than five games” because the custodian refused to “state unequivocally that he has no anti-Semitic views”.

The announcement came Thursday, hours after Irving spoke to the media for the first time since Saturday when he endorsed conspiracy theorist Alex Jones’ views on a “new world order” and questioned the backlash he received for posting Amazon’s link to a documentary called “From Hebrews to Blacks: Awake Black America!”, a film with anti-Semitic views.

Following the suspension, Irving posted an apology on his Instagram account.

“To all the Jewish families and communities who have been hurt and affected by my post, I am deeply sorry for the pain I have caused you and I apologize,” Irving said.

When asked earlier Thursday if he was sorry, Irving said, “I meant no harm. I’m not the one who made the documentary.”

The Nets said in a statement that they have “repeatedly attempted to work with Kyrie Irving to help him understand the harm and danger of his words and actions, which began with the release of a film containing deeply disturbing anti-Semitic hate speech.”

“We were stunned today, when given the opportunity at the media session, that Kyrie refused to state unequivocally that he has no anti-Semitic beliefs, nor to acknowledge the specific hate material in the film. This was not the first time he had the opportunity – but failed – to clarify.”

Earlier Thursday, Irving met with reporters for just over six minutes, but did not apologize for his recent actions.

When asked for specifics on what he didn’t believe in the documentary, Irving said, “some of the criticism of the Jewish faith and community for sure. There were some things that were brought up that were unfortunate.”

Asked if he was surprised his post offended anyone, Irving gave this lengthy response:

“I think I can ask a better question, which is just ‘Where were you when I was a kid and realized that 300 million of my ancestors were buried in America?’

“Where did you ask those same questions when I was a kid dealing with learning about the traumatic events in my family history and what I’m proud to come from. And why I’m proud to stand here. And why when I repeat that I will not back down, it has nothing to do with rejecting any other race or group of people. I’m just proud of my heritage and what we’ve been through and the fact that this has anchored me to the Jewish community and I’m here answering questions about whether or not I’m sorry for something that I didn’t create and that’s something that I’ve shared with everyone I say I take responsibility, then I sit there.”

Just before Irving walked through the Nets gym to meet with reporters, Silver released a statement blasting Irving for his stance and actions afterward. The NBAThe first post condemning the hate speech did not mention Irving by name. Neither did the tweet from the NBPA, of which Irving is vice president.

“Kyrie Irving made the reckless decision to post a link to a film that contains deeply offensive anti-Semitic material,” Silver said in a statement. “While we appreciate the fact that he has agreed to work with the Brooklyn Nets and the Anti-Defamation League to combat anti-Semitism and other forms of discrimination, I am disappointed that he did not offer an unqualified apology and more specifically condemn the vile and harmful content. contained in the film he chose to release. I will personally meet with Kyrie next week to discuss this situation.”

In a joint statement Wednesday night, the Nets and Irving, in conjunction with the Anti-Defamation League, announced that Irving and the organization will each donate $500,000 “to causes and organizations working to eradicate hate and intolerance in our communities.” In a joint statement, Irving acknowledged his actions but did not apologize for them.

On Thursday night, after the Nets announced the suspension, Anti-Defamation League Executive Director Jonathan Greenblatt tweeted that his organization “cannot in good conscience accept [Irving’s] donation” after it was “clear that Kyrie does not feel responsible for his actions”.

The Nets embark on a three-game road trip beginning Friday in Washington, DC, with back-to-back games in Charlotte on Saturday. The team heads to Dallas for a Monday night game against Mavericks before returning home.

(Photo: Elsa / Getty Images)

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