Former All-Star Teammate Rips Kyrie Irving For ‘Pawns’ Post

Getty Images Kevin Love and LeBron James of the Cleveland Cavaliers (2016)

Brooklyn Nets All-Star point guard Kyrie Irving’s social media response to the NBA fining him caused a stir around the league and now one of his former All-Star teammates from the champion 2016 Cleveland Cavaliers is speaking up about it. 

Irving, who refused to talk to the media during Nets training camp, was fined $25,000 and so was his organization. The Nets and Irving were fined the same amount before Irving took to his Instagram for a response.

He quoted Malcolm X, which read, “I’ve had enough of someone else’s propaganda. I’m for truth, no matter who tells it. I’m fror Justice, no matter who it’s for or against. I’m a human being first and foremost, and as such I am for whoever and whatever benefits humanity as a whole.” 

Irving then offered the following, in regard to what the NBA should do with the $50,000 surrendered by him and the Nets.

“I pray we utilize the “fine money” for the marginalized communities in need, especially seeing where our world is presently. (I am) I am here for Peace, Love, and Greatness,” Irving wrote, per “So stop distracting me and my team, and appreciate the Art. We move different over here.

“I don’t talk to Pawns. My attention is worth more.” 

Kevin Love On Kyrie Irving’s ‘Pawns’ Post: ‘Calling Anyone A ‘Pawn’ Is A Sure Sign Of Disrespect’

Cavaliers center and former teammate Kevin Love was asked to comment on Irving’s backlash, per Spencer Davies of  

“Calling anyone a pawn is a sure sign of disrespect,” Love said, per Basketball News. “I’m not a divisive person.”

Love, who was traded to Cleveland from the Minnesota Timberwolves after LeBron James decided to return to the Cavaliers as a free agent, played three seasons with Irving.

“I understand where Kyrie is coming from in trying to better a number of people’s lives but I’m just not a divisive person, so that’s where I stand on that,” Love said. “I love Kyrie. I know he’s changed, (don’t know) what’s going on, but again I’m just not a divisive person. I believe everybody has a part to play, so long as the intent’s there and it comes from a good place.” 

Kevin Love Shares A Lesson He Learned From His Former Head Coach Flip Saunders

Irving referring to the media as “pawns” is where the controversy of Kyrie’s post lies. Kyrie’s “sweet” sentiment of suggesting the NBA commit to a $50,000 donation to communities of need in lieu of accepting it as the result of a deserving punishment comes off as snarky and disingenuous.  

A pawn is the weakest piece in a game of chess. To refer to media members as so; is disrespectful, according to Love, who went on, with reporters, and offered perspective on the matter.  

Love talked about conversations he had with his former head coach of the Minnesota Timberwolves, the late Flip Saunders on how everyone can learn from each other in this business and that an NBA player isn’t above anyone else because of their status within society. 

“Every man or woman is my superior that I can learn with them; that’s just how my curiosity really works, and I don’t have fear with that,” Love explained. “I talk about not having prejudice with that, I try to live by those words. That’s how I feel.”

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