HomeSportsWarriors Coach Steve Kerr Sounds Off on Kyrie Irving Controversy

Warriors Coach Steve Kerr Sounds Off on Kyrie Irving Controversy


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Golden State Warriors head coach Steve Kerr reacts to a play during a game against the Orlando Magic

Kyrie Irving has now been suspended by the Brooklyn Nets, who have deemed the point guard as “currently unfit to be associated with the Brooklyn Nets.” The decision came after Irving again met with the media and again showed no more remorse for his actions. The star admitted “responsibility,” but stopped short of issuing an apology. Now, the guard will be suspended from at least five games for the Nets, and honestly could be done in Brooklyn altogether. 

Former players like Shaquille O’Neal and Charles Barkley have issued strong statements over Irving and his need to be suspended. Amar’e Stoudemire, who was an All-Star player and also coached Irving in Brooklyn, also called out Irving. However, no active players have called out the recent antisemitic behavior from Kyrie Irving. Devin Booker said he hasn’t really been paying attention to it. Robin Lopez retweeted the recent Substack written and shared by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, but that’s as close as it’s gotten for an active player to speak out. 


Steve Kerr on Kyrie Irving Controversy

Even Steve Kerr initially shied away from speaking about Irving when asked on Thursday, saying, “Yeah, I’m going to sit that one out.” However, after a follow-up from ESPN’s Kendra Andrews, who asked about the importance of the NBA standing against discriminatory language, got an answer from Kerr on the subject. 

“Words matter. Words really, really matter,” Kerr said. “And in modern society, with social media, the way things can fan across the globe exponentially and get 5 million hits immediately, every comment matters. Everything you say matters…We have to be more vigilant as a society. We can’t just be accepting comments that are so destructive and insulting to people. And it’s crucial that everybody, whether you’re a professional athlete or not, it’s crucial that everybody think before they just throw stuff out there that can be so damaging.”


Nets Suspending Kyrie Irving

The Nets finally made the decision to suspend Irving after he failed to show remorse for the hurt he caused by sharing the antisemitic documentary. All he needed to do was apologize, and he stopped short of doing so. The Nets released their statement today sharing their decision to suspend Irving, saying in part: 

“We were dismayed today, when given an opportunity in a media session, that Kyrie refused to unequivocally say he has no antisemitic beliefs, nor acknowledge specific hateful material in the film. This was not the first time he had the opportunity — but failed — to clarify,” the Nets said in a statement.

“Such failure to disavow antisemitism when given a clear opportunity to do so is deeply disturbing, is against the values of our organization, and constitutes conduct detrimental to the team. Accordingly, we are of the view that he is currently unfit to be associated with the Brooklyn Nets.”

The Nets kept Irving out of media availability two days in a row, a clear violation of league rules to do so. Marks called that a decision to give him time to “simmer down,” and you’d think when Irving made it back to the media he would come with more of an apology, but he didn’t and was suspended as a result. 

 


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