Nets' Kevin Durant on Kyrie Irving's part-time status: 'I'm not about to force somebody to get a vaccine'

2 weeks ago 31

Written By Gilbert McGregor

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Kevin-Durant-Kyrie-Irving-01082022-Getty-FTR (Getty Images)

With Kyrie Irving precocious rejoining the Nets connected a part-time basis, the squad is adjusting to his constricted availability.

After impressing successful his play debut against the Pacers, Irving could not instrumentality the level for a location crippled against the defending champion Bucks owed to New York City regulations for persons that are not vaccinated for COVID-19. As a result, the Nets trailed by arsenic galore arsenic 24 points arsenic the Bucks cruised to a wire-to-wire victory.

MORE: Inside Nets' struggles against league's apical teams

It's wide that Irving's beingness was sorely missed. Following the loss, Kevin Durant was asked if helium had spoken with Irving astir his part-time availability, to which helium provided an honorable answer.

"I told him however important helium is — however overmuch I privation him to play each game," Durant began. "But similar I said, I'm not astir to unit idiosyncratic to get a vaccine, like, that's not my thing. So helium tin play basketball? Nah, I'm not astir to bash that."

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Kevin Durant speaks connected Kyrie Irving:

"I'm not astir to unit idiosyncratic to get a vaccine. So helium play basketball?

KD besides added: "It's a weird situation. Who knows? I don't recognize astir of this s--t - COVID, each of this worldly has been brainsick the past fewer years" pic.twitter.com/CzoPjecyvx

— Nets Videos (@SNYNets) January 8, 2022

After Nets wide manager Sean Marks said Irving would not beryllium permitted to beryllium a part-time subordinate up of the season, the franchise changed its people successful mid-December, paving the mode for Irving's instrumentality to the lineup to commencement the caller year.

MORE: Why the Nets permitted Kyrie to rejoin team

Durant admits that, portion helium won't unit Irving to marque a determination 1 mode oregon another, they person had conversations astir his availability. Durant said it's yet a idiosyncratic choice.

"We've had conversations astir wanting him to beryllium a portion of the squad and conversations astir him being present full-time but that's connected his time," Durant added. "Whatever determination helium wanna make, he's gonna make. It's connected america to travel successful present and beryllium professionals nary substance what."

MORE: Team-by-team COVID tracker

The Nets fell to 24-13 connected the play with the nonaccomplishment to the Bucks, bully for 2nd successful the Eastern Conference. As overmuch arsenic Irving volition assistance the squad successful games distant from Brooklyn, the Nets are really 14-3 connected the roadworthy and a pedestrian 10-10 connected their location floor.

The issues mightiness tally deeper than not having Irving around.

Nets docket 2021-22

Date Opponent Time (ET) National TV
Jan. 9 vs. Spurs 12:00 p.m.
Jan. 10 at Trail Blazers 10:00 p.m.
Jan. 12 at Bulls 10:00 p.m. ESPN
Jan. 13 vs. Thunder 8:30 p.m.
Jan. 15 vs. Pelicans 7:30 p.m.
Jan. 17 at Cavaliers 3:00 p.m.
Jan. 19 at Wizards 7:00 p.m.
Jan. 21 at Spurs 8:30 p.m.
Jan. 23 at Timberwolves 8:00 p.m.
Jan. 25 vs. Lakers 7:30 p.m. TNT

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