The Brooklyn Nets continue to try and put together the pieces of what has been a daunting start to the season. While they go for their third straight victory in Memphis on Friday they will have to do so without the services of their star point guard Kyrie Irving. Kyrie will miss a second straight game on Friday due to personal reasons.
Irving To Miss Second Straight Game on Friday
Heavy’s own Brandon “Scoop B” Robinson originally reported that Irving’s reasoning for not playing against the Sixers was that he just didn’t want to play. However, Brooklyn’s head coach Steve Nash was quick to refute the report. “I don’t believe that to be the case,” Nash said of the report on a Zoom call with reporters following Thursday’s win. Multiple sources have said the reason for Kyrie missing last night’s game against the Philadelphia 76ers was due to the events that occured in the Capitol Building in Washington DC on Wednesday. Irving has been having a stellar season thus far. The six-time NBA All star is averaging 27.1 points, 5.3 rebounds, and 6.1 assists per game. Irving is also shooting over 40% from the three-point line this year.
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While Irving and Durant are both having MVP-like seasons, the Brooklyn Nets have prided themselves on having a roster that goes 10 men deep. Joe Harris had a game-high 28 points off of the bench, while four out of the five Brooklyn starters scored in double figures including 22 from Caris LeVert. While the reasoning for Irving’s absence last night is still up in the air, LeVert and the rest of the Nets support Kyrie 100 percent and will welcome him back with open arms. “That’s a personal issue for him,” LeVert told reporters over Zoom after Thursday’s victory. “We support him, You know, he’s our brother. We went out there and competed without him. Like I said, it was a personal issue for him.”
Nets Reserves Have Carried Team in Stars’ Absence
While LeVert and the Nets await the return of their two superstars, the team understands that is not an excuse for them to not play hard. Having a ‘next man up’ mentality is what will help them reach their ultimate goal of a championship. Kevin Durant has emphasized that to the rest of the team. “Kev texted us and said, ‘Next man up,’” Nets’ shooting guard Bruce Brown said to reporters on a Zoom call after Tuesday’s win against Utah. “We’re all ready. We all know, when our time comes, we’re going to be ready. People took the challenge tonight to step up and play well, and we did that.”
When Irving and Durant return remains to be seen. What the Nets have to do is face the task in front of them with the players that are available. Against Memphis on Friday the Nets have a chance to be two games above .500 for the first time since they started the season 2-0. If they can get there without their two stars, the road ahead will only get easier for them.