Nets’ Kyrie Irving Sends Chilling Warning to NBA

Kyrie Irving

Getty Nets star Kyrie Irving.

Brooklyn Nets point guard Kyrie Irving had the best game of his career on March 15 against the Orlando Magic. The All-Star went off for 60 points while shooting 20-of-31 from the field, 8-of-12 from beyond the arc and 12-of-13 from the free-throw line.

Kevin Durant scored 53 points in the Nets’ previous game versus the New York Knicks. He and Irving are the first teammates in NBA history to score 50 or more points in back-to-back games. Brooklyn has won four games in a row and Irving believes “something special” is happening, not just this season, but for years to come.

“Making history, man. Making history,” Irving said during his postgame media session. “Doing it with that guy is very special, but credit goes to our group. Our guys in our locker room, they really believe in us. They really rock with us. There’s not a doubt in our mind that they really believe that we can do something special, and not just this year, but for years to come. We have a good group and we’re all sacrificing something that’s bigger than ourselves.”

The Nets are in eighth place in the Eastern Conference standings. It looks like they’ll be in the play-in tournament. However, with the way Irving and Durant are playing, Brooklyn may be the scariest play-in team.

One issue that could prevent the Nets from making a run at the championship, though, is Irving being unvaccinated.

Irving Can’t Play in Toronto or New York

If the season ended today, the Nets would travel to Canada to face the Toronto Raptors in the first play-in game. Irving wouldn’t be allowed to play since he hasn’t received the COVID-19 vaccine.

If the Nets beat the Raptors, they would clinch the seventh seed in the Eastern Conference playoffs. However, if they lose, they would face the winner of the Atlanta Hawks-Charlotte Hornets play-in game at the Barclays Center and Irving wouldn’t be eligible to play.

Nothing has changed with Irving. He won’t get the COVID-19 vaccine. So unless NYC Mayor Eric Adams lifts the vaccine mandate, Irving will remain a part-time player.

“My faith in things turning around hasn’t changed. It hasn’t wavered,” Irving said. “But I wouldn’t be able to sit up here and talk to you guys comfortably unless I had a big supporting group behind me and they’ve been selfless this whole time.”

Irving was at the Barclays Center when Durant dropped 53 points against the Knicks. He watched the game from a courtside seat, which was awkward for Uncle Drew. However, that’s the world he will continue to live in unless he gets the COVID-19 vaccine or Adams allows him to play in New York.

Irving: ‘It’s a Little Awkwardness’

It was strange for everyone on the Nets to see Irving sit courtside during the Knicks game instead of playing. While Irving remains hopeful that Adams will decide to roll back the vaccine mandate, he will continue to support his teammates from his courtside seat.

The one-time champion will be at the Barclays Center when the Nets host the Dallas Mavericks on March 16.

“It’s a little awkwardness,” Irving said. “But showing up there with my family and getting a warm embrace from New York, Brooklyn, just everybody that’s there to support the Nets and support our organization, support me and just support what’s going on out here and want to see a change.”

Even though Irving is a part-time player, the Nets are the most dangerous play-in team. With the way Irving and Durant are scoring the ball, Brooklyn could still win the title.

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