When the coronavirus pandemic struck the world in late 2019, it took lives and disrupted careers. However, humanity found a way to survive, and the COVID-19 vaccine seemed to help.
This is probably why not many questioned New York City’s mandate for people, especially athletes like NBA players, to be vaccinated. Nonetheless, Kyrie Irving is not interested in following protocols.
Despite being benched by his team, the Brooklyn Nets, the 29-year-old remained true to his beliefs. The NBA star recently opened up on social media about his decision to stay unvaccinated.
His body, His Choice
A day after Irving’s team revealed they would bench him for the season for not adhering to the COVID-19 protocols.
The athlete expressed the reasons for his actions during an Instagram Live session on Wednesday, October 13.
As reported by Hollywoodlife, the NBA star began his 20-minute session with the opening words, “Nobody’s going to hijack my voice.” True to this statement, the athlete confirmed he decided to remain unvaccinated.
The father-of-one went on to ask the public to respect his choice as he planned on standing by his beliefs.
He also stated that these convictions were not influenced by being “anti-vax” or vice-versa but doing what felt good to him. In his words:
“If I’m going to be demonized about having more questions and taking my time to make a decision with my life, then that’s just what it is.”
Standing one’s ground is not easy, and sometimes the price can be costly. In Kyrie’s case, choosing to remain unvaccinated meant no pay for all his missed games.
The NBA star will reportedly lose $15.5 million; however, the 29-year-old stated he was not worried about the money during his Instagram live.
The athlete was saddened that jobs were being lost because the mandate had divided the world into two sides, vaccinated and unvaccinated.
Despite his firm beliefs, Kyrie confessed that the ban significantly affected him as the father-of-one did not wish to miss the opportunity to play his favorite sport.
The Blast had previously reported about the heated debates that arose over the vaccine mandates on NBA players and fans who would love to watch them play in the arena.
The situation was further complicated when the NBA announced that unvaccinated players would not only be unfit to play but would also be unpaid for missed games.
This was a major cause of concern for teams like the Brooklyn Nets and the Golden State Warriors. Their star players, such as Irving for the Nets and Andrew Wiggins for the Warriors, were unvaccinated.
In Wiggins’ case, the star player revealed that he did not wish to be vaccinated. He even tried to be exempted from the mandate for religious reasons, but the 26-year-old was denied.
The athlete confessed to sources that he would not give in and keep fighting for what he believed was right. He also pointed out that what is considered suitable for one person may not be the same for another individual.