Kyrie Irving is often one of the most misunderstood athletes in sports right now.
For some, Irving’s Earth is flat commentary was frustrating and some journalists have expressed being frustrated with lack of access to the current Brooklyn Nets point guard.
Irving has been vocal about his disconnect from the media in the past. “Being one of the top guys in the league, this all comes with it,” Irving said last year.
“It’s a responsibility that I have to make sure that I know who I’m doing this for and know why I’m doing this. It’s for the players that are coming behind me who will be in this league and setting an example for them on how to handle things and how to evolve within your career (…) I’m still learning, bro. I come from a suburb of New Jersey. I’m not used to all this [attention].”
Zimbabwean doctor, entrepreneur and writer J. Nozipo Maraire once said: “Until the lion learns how to write, every story will glorify the hunter.”
“Listen, maybe he’s a complicated individual,” Fox Sports’ Jason McIntyre told me on the Scoop B Radio Podcast.
“He doesn’t give a ton of interviews , we don’t know a lot about him…we know that he’s made a lot of money and there’s chatter that he may be willing to walk away and hey, more power to him. You know, you’ve made a good living in basketball and off the court with the Uncle Drew and everything like that – yeah dude. People like you and I just – I don’t know man, something rubs me weird about Kyrie and maybe it’s that information void when he’s not talking. When he’s not active on social media the way LeBron is, the way Luka Doncic, Jayson Tatum… When there’s an information void, people try to fill in the gaps and I’m not being the filler-inner, I’m just saying it’s very awkward.”
Last month, Irving organized a conference call with pro-basketball players from both the WNBA and the NBA.
The purpose of the call was for players to voice their concerns regarding the NBA’s decision to resume play in Orlando next month. More specifically, the task force’s mission has been to explore solutions for players reluctant to speak out. Irving, a Vice President of the NBA’s Players Association was joined by Player Association President Chris Paul on the call.
The Los Angeles Lakers’ Dwight Howard and Avery Bradley were present for the calls. So was Irving’s Nets teammate, Kevin Durant, the Utah Jazz’s Donovan Mitchell and the Portland Trail Blazers’ Damian Lillard, Carmelo Anthony and C.J. McCollum.
According to multiple reports, while on the call, Irving stated: “I don’t support going into Orlando. I’m not with the systematic racism and the bullshit …
“Something smells a little fishy. Whether we want to admit it or not, we are targeted as black men every day we wake up.”
Many don’t agree with Irving. “As a leader and as a vice president of the NBA Players Association, you’re at that top of the top when dealing with 400 players in the NBA,” ESPN analyst, Kendrick Perkins told me last month on the Scoop B Radio Podcast.
“You’re representing retired players, and players that are current players and everything right? So, everything has to have a strategic plan. Does that make sense?… Everything has to make sense. Everything has to go through a process – just like when the NBA and the Players Association and the way that Chris Paul and Michelle Roberts was handling things for as whether or not if the NBA season was going to return. That took like a two month process. That took days and hours of phone conversations, talking with other players; and here it is, Kyrie was part of those conversations, ok? He was part of those conversations. He was on the phone. And he was on the phone agreeing that basketball should return.”
As it stands now, the NBA will resume play on July 30 at Walt Disney World in Orlando Florida.
Teams will compete to fill the league’s 16-NBA Playoff spots in both the NBA’s Eastern and Western Conferences with the NBA Finals slated to finish no later than October 12.
Irving, who averaged 27.4 points, 5.2 rebounds and 6.4 assists per contest, won’t participate.
As reported in December, Irving had thoracic bursitis in his shoulder and is still rehabbing from his surgical procedure.