Brooklyn Nets star Kyrie Irving broke his silence on why he chose to forgo the vaccine against the coronavirus and possibly putting his NBA career in jeopardy.
Irving made his remarks Wednesday night on Instagram Live. He said he didn 't had no intention of retiring.
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"I do this which is best for me. I know the consequences here, and if that means I'm being judged and demonized for it, that's just what it is. This is the role that I play, but I never wished to give up my passion, my love, my dream just during this tenure "he said.
Kyrie Irving ofBrooklyn Nets applauds from the bench during a preseason game against the Los Angeles Lakers at Staples Center on October 3, 2021 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian / Images)
Irving, who stands to lose half of his $ 35 million salary for ignoring the rules vaccine, said his position wasn 't a question of money.
"So what? It ' s not a question of money. not always about the money. It's about choosing what's best for you. Do you think I really want to lose money? "
NET BANS KYRIE IRVING FROM THE TEAM ON THE IMMUNIZATION STATUS
Kyrie Irving # 11 of the Brooklyn Nets shoots the ball during the game against the Detroit Pistons on March 13, 2021 at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. (Photo by Ned Dishman / NBAE via Images)
The playmaker said he supports both vaccinated and unvaccinated people and has made no indication that he was against the vaccine. He made it clear that he was just not getting the vaccine.
"Again, I will say it again. It's not about the Nets, it's not about the organization, it's not about the NBA, it's not about politics. It 's not anything. It 's just about the freedom of what I want to do "he said.lare.
The Nets have drawn a red line on Irving 's availability for the 2021-22 season. On Tuesday, general manager Sean Marks said Irving will not be a part-time player.
"Given the evolving nature of the situation and after much deliberation, we have decided that Kyrie Irving will not be a part-time player. will not play or train with the team until he is eligible to be a full participant, "said Marks.
Kyrie Irving # 11 of the Brooklyn Nets dribbles in the first half against the Charlotte Hornets at Barclays Center on 16 avril 2021 in the Brooklyn neighborhood of New York. (Photo by Sarah Stier / Images)
"Kyrie did a personal choice, and we respect his individual right to choose. Currently, choice restricts his ability to be a full-time member of the team, and we will not allow any member of our team to participate with availability at part-time. "
Irving is not eligible to play in home games, where a New York warrant requires professional athletes on city teams to be vaccinated for practice or perform in public places.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.