Kyrie Irving returns to Nets in Sunday’s game against Grizzlies originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston
Kyrie Irving is returning to the Brooklyn Nets’ lineup on Sunday against the Memphis Grizzlies. Irving missed the last eight games under suspension for promoting an antisemitic documentary on social media at the end of the last month.
In the immediate aftermath, members of the Jewish community, NBA pundits and team owner Joe Tsai all spoke out against Irving’s tweet. The Nets attempted to handle the matter internally, keeping Irving from the media and pledging to match Irving’s $500,000 donation to the Anti-Defamation League.
The situation reached a boiling point, however, on Nov. 3rd when Irving refused to apologize or unequivocally condemn antisemitism. Within hours, the Nets announced a minimum five-game suspension along with a list of six action items to be completed before his return.
In an interview with SNY on Saturday, Irving said he wanted to “apologize deeply” for his actions. He went on to say that if he could do it over, his focus would be to “heal and repair a lot of my close relationships with my Jewish relatives, brothers and sisters.”
Early this morning, Irving tweeted a message of thanks to his supporters.
To All of you that are standing next to me on this Journey I want to say thank you, I love you, and I honor your fearlessness and bravery. You motivate me more than you know. Now, Let’s build and celebrate one another
— Hélà (@KyrieIrving) November 20, 2022
Irving’s suspension was the latest absence for the seven-time All-Star. He’s averaged just over 34 games in the last three seasons, missing extensive periods of play due to injury and his refusal to be vaccinated against COVID-19.
The Nets host the Grizzlies tonight at 7 p.m. ET in Brooklyn.