Over the past month, Brooklyn Nets star, Kyrie Irving, has made it known that he will not get vaccinated against COVID-19. He’s even emphasized that he’s willing to miss home games, over New York City’s vaccine mandate.
Irving even took to Instagram, almost two weeks ago, to explain that he’s supposedly not anti-vax, but is. just standing up for people who are losing their jobs, over their refusal to adhere to vaccine mandates. NYC has made it clear, that people cannot enter restaurants, gyms, or entertainment venues, without proof of vaccination.
Kyrie Supporters Protest Outside Of Barclays Center
On Sunday, the Nets had their home opener at the Barclays Center, where they took on the Charlotte Hornets. They ended up taking a 111-95 loss, though, and fell to 1-2. Prior to the game, though, supporters of Irving, were outside the venue. They made it known that they stand with the Nets star, and also do not support NYC’s vaccine mandates.
These protestors were right in front of the Barclays Center, as they appeared to try to enter the venue. According to TMZ, barricades were pushed down, and security had to act swiftly. They eventually deescalated the protest, and the game went on as scheduled.
Celebrities Have Criticized Irving’s Decision To Remain Unvaccinated
Irving has definitely been receiving a lot of public backlash, for still being unvaccinated. People believe that he is not keeping others around him safe, and is being a bad teammate. They also point out the hypocrisy of Irving saying he is not against vaccines, but is anti-mandates. Several celebrities have stepped up as well, regarding Irving’s actions out. These include NBA legend Charles Barkley, as well as iconic radio show host, Howard Stern. Stern even went on his own radio show, last week, to call Irving the “top idiot” in the United States, and a “douchebag.”
“In terms of idiots, he’s got to be the top idiot in the country right now,” Stern explained. “Guy’s got a chance as a young man to make millions of dollars, all he’s got to do is get vaccinated but he doesn’t want to get vaccinated. This guy’s got a history of being stupid. He’s one of those guys who was a flat-earther too. And, you know what, he doesn’t know anything. His mind works in a very strange way.”
Howard also had high praise for the Nets, on how they’re handling the Irving situation. His praise got to the point where he wished that they ran the US.
“I don’t know who runs the Brooklyn Nets, but I wish they were running the country. I love this. Basically saying, ‘Listen, douchebag. You’ve got to do what is right. That’s it.'”
Kyrie’s Absence May Affect Nets’ Championship Aspirations
The Nets are regarded as one of the best teams in the NBA, are still viewed as an NBA championship contender. They have two other superstars as well, in James Harden and Kevin Durant. Many feel that Brooklyn can’t win a championship though, without the services of Irving. That was the case in the playoffs last season, as Irving wasn’t available, due to a leg injury.