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NIKE SUSPEND relationship with Kyrie Irving & he will not PLAY for at least 5 games
Kyrie Irving made his Brooklyn Nets comeback from suspension Sunday night as he was named in the starting five for their 127-115 win over the Memphis Grizzlies.
The 30-year-old was indefinitely banned by the Nets 'until he satisfied a series of objective remedial measures that addressed the harmful impact of his conduct' after posting a link to the Amazon page of a film based on a book described as 'anti-Semitic'.
After missing eight games since being suspended on November 3 he appears to have met the road to redemption requirements set by the team.
Irving was as expected included in the line-up to face the Grizzlies at the Barclays Center. He started alongside Joe Harris, Kevin Durant, Royce O'Neale and Ben Simmons.
Durant scored 20 of his 26 points in the second half as the Nets pulled away in the fourth quarter.
Kyrie Irving made his Brooklyn Nets comeback Sunday night following suspension for Tweet
Nets guard Kyrie Irving shoots over Memphis Grizzlies forward John Konchar (46)
The 30-year-old ignited controversy by tweeting a link to the Amazon page for the 2018 film 'Hebrews to Negroes: Wake Up Black America'
On his return Irving said after victory: 'It felt good. I missed my teammates, missed the coaching staff... It felt good to get this game out of the way. Now we can move forward with the rest of the season.'
Durant has reached 25 points in all 17 games this season and is the first to do since Rick Barry scored at least 25 in the first 25 games for the 1967-68 San Francisco Warriors. Durant made 9 of 16 shots overall and scored 14 points in the third to help the Nets erase a five-point halftime deficit.
Ben Simmons scored a season-high 22 on 11 of 13 from the field as the Nets shot a blistering 60.2 percent. Coming off the bench, Yuta Watanabe added 12 of his 16 in the fourth quarter while Irving finished with 14 after sitting out the past eight games.
Irving released a more formal apology on Saturday in an interview with SNY, where he said he isn't 'anti-Semitic' and wanted to 'apologize deeply' for the posts.
He was asked postgame if he might file a grievance claim regarding his suspension, to which he replied: 'I got to leave that to my legal team and leave that to the warriors I have around me.
After missing eight games since being suspended on November 3, Irving played the Grizzlies
'I have some strong people, men and women around me, that are going to do everything possible to make sure that I'm protected, my family's protected, and we protect one another. So I'm sure some things will be done in the future, but there's no timetable on that right now.'
He was suspended for at least five games and served that minimum ban last Saturday but owner Joe Tsai said Irving still had 'work to do' at their win over the Los Angeles Clippers.
Irving ignited controversy by tweeting a link to the Amazon page for the 2018 film 'Hebrews to Negroes: Wake Up Black America.'
The movie is based on a 2015 book by the same name, which Rolling Stone described as 'venomously anti-Semitic.'
Kevin Durant scored 20 of his 26 points in second half as the Nets won 127-115 vs. the Grizzlies
After posting the Amazon link to the film on Twitter, Irving quarreled with media, telling reporters 'I'm not going to stand down on anything that I believe in.' He then appeared to backtrack by deleting the post without an explanation.
After days of competing statements from Irving, the Nets, Tsai, and Silver, the club suspended the All-Star for at least five games.
Irving, who has been criticized for failing to apologize, finally said he was sorry in a statement, but only after he got his minimum five-game ban from the Nets.
The Nets released an angry and frustrated statement earlier this month, saying the decision to suspend Irving stemmed from his ongoing lack of apology, the latest of refusal coming after an awful media appearance.
Irving has faced a barrage of criticism, ranging from the team's front office to NBACommissioner, Adam Silver, former NBA players and media and never had a fixed date for his return after being suspended earlier this month.
'I'm not anti-Semitic, I never have been,' Irving told SNY. 'I don't have hate in my heart for the Jewish people or anyone that identifies as a Jew. I'm not anti-Jewish.'
'I just want to apologize deeply for all of my actions throughout the time that it's been since the post was first put in,' Irving continued.
'I've had a lot of time to think, but my focus initially - if I could do it over - would be to heal and repair a lot of my close relationships with my Jewish relatives.
'I've always tried to stand up for what I believe in and stand up for those I feel like are being discriminated against based on their skin color or religion.
'I stand with all of my brothers and sisters that are really doing the things necessary to bring harmony and peace to this world.'
Elsewhere in the NBA Sunday night, the Suns beat the Knicks, the Wizards overcame the Hornets, the Kings beat the Pistons, the Cavaliers won 113-87 over the Heat and the Nuggets beat the Mavericks by one point.
Klay Thompson scored a season-high 41 points, Stephen Curry posted a season-best 15 assists as Golden State recorded its first road victory of the season with a hard-fought decision over Houston.
While Anthony Davis recorded 30 points and 18 rebounds as Los Angeles dominated visiting San Antonio to win its season-best third straight game.
Kyrie Irving Has Apologized for Posting Video with ‘False, Antisemitic Statements’ Post Nets Suspension | WATCH
Nike is pressing pause on its endorsement deal with Kyrie Irving ... and now his signature shoe is being shelved.
The shoe giant announced Friday it was suspending its business relationship with the NBA star, explaining ... "At Nike, we believe there is no place for hate speech and we condemn any form of antisemitism."
Nike also says it will no longer launch the Kyrie 8 basketball shoe, adding ... "We are deeply saddened and disappointed by the situation and its impact on everyone."
As you know ... Kyrie's faced a ton of backlash ever since tweeting out a link to an antisemitic film last week.
The point guard finally issued a lengthy mea culpa on his social media after being suspended, but folks are questioning his sincerity.
Kyrie's apology wasn't enough to save his relationship with Nike ... at least for now.
KYRIE IRVING ACKNOWLEDGES HURTING JEWISH COMMUNITY - Donating 500K
We have to say we are a little surprised that Kyrie Irving apologized Thursday for posting a documentary with antisemitic conspiracy theories and falsehoods on Twitter, a few hours after he was suspended five games without pay by the Brooklyn Nets.
And we thought he was committed to being ornery just for the sake of it. Fortunately for him, we were wrong … this time. Anyway, Irving’s Instagram apology came a little more than a week after he posted the what many considered an offensive tweet about the video, which has since been deleted.
Irving conceded the video “contained some false anti-Semitic statements, narratives, and languages that were untrue and offensive to the Jewish Race/Religion.”
He went on to directly apologize to the Jewish community, though he indicated there were some parts of the documentary he still agrees with.
Irving’s apology was just the first step for the suspended Brooklyn Nets star guard, according to Nets General Manager Sean Marks.
Marks said Friday morning that Irving needs to meet with anti-hate groups and Jewish leaders before he returns to the team.
“After anything like this you’d always hope there is a change – a change in feelings, a change in attitude, and per his apology last night, that’s a step in the right direction,” Marks said. “But again, as we’ve stated, actions speak louder than words. He’s had some time and he’ll have more time to reflect on this.”
Marks added that he has not talked to Irving since his mea culpa late Thursday just hours after the team suspended him for his refusal to “unequivocally say he has no antisemitic beliefs, nor acknowledge specific hateful material in the film” titled “Hebrews to Negroes: Wake up Black America,” a so-called documentary that is filled with antisemitism and fabrications.
Well, it’s a done deal now. We think.
Kyrie Irving Catches Heat for Promoting ‘Hebrews to Negroes’ Film Called by Some as Antisemitic | WATCH
The 30-year-old Brooklyn Nets star Tweeted a link to "Hebrews to Negroes: Wake Up Black America!" last week ... and despite almost immediate backlash, Irving refused to back down, standing by his actions.
That is until Wednesday evening ... when the Brooklyn Nets and Kyrie released a statement apologizing and announcing the large monetary donation.
“I oppose all forms of hatred and oppression and stand strong with communities that are marginalized and impacted every day," Kyrie said.
"I am aware of the negative impact of my post towards the Jewish community and I take responsibility. I do not believe everything said in the documentary was true or reflects my morals and principles."
The 7x NBA All-Star continued ... "I am a human being learning from all walks of life and I intend to do so with an open mind and a willingness to listen. So from my family and I, we meant no harm to any one group, race or religion of people, and wish to only be a beacon of truth and light."
Worth noting -- Kyrie does not flat-out say "I'm sorry," or, "I apologize" ... which has some people saying his statement and donation isn't enough.
Irving stopped short of completely condemning the ideas in the movie ... but it's certainly a big departure from his previous position.
Prior to tonight's announcement, Irving was getting destroyed everywhere from on TV, to social media, and even at Barclays. In fact, a group of fans protested Kyrie earlier this week ... wearing shirts that read "FIGHT ANTISEMITISM."
Brooklyn is home to one of the country's largest Jewish populations.
As for the money, the Nets are also chipping in 500 grand ... bringing the total to $1 million. The organization says they'll divide the cash among "causes and organizations that work to eradicate hate and intolerance in our communities."
The team also says they'll work with the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) -- which fights antisemitism -- to "develop educational programming that is inclusive and will comprehensively combat all forms of antisemitism and bigotry."
NBA star Kyrie Irving is defending himself against antisemitic labels. The Brooklyn Nets player has been the center of recent controversy after sharing a film that explains the alleged history of Black Americans and the Jewish religion
According to reports, the movie titled “Hebrews To Negros: Wake Up Black America” allegedly speaks about Jewish slave trade ships and “espouses several antisemitic tropes.”
However, Kyrie Irving, 30, says this is not about antisemitism, but rather a real and true history of a distorted race of people.
Irving’s vilification began earlier this week after he shared the Amazon documentary with his 4.6 million Twitter followers
“My name translates into Hebrew language as YHWH, so I went on Amazon prime I was like ‘let me see if there are any documentaries on YHWH’. So went in the search bar, typed in YHWH, that came up. Went out and shared it on my platform – that was my night.”
The NBA champ continued, responding directly to the backlash he’s faced as many have begun to label him antisemitic since sharing the piece. He continued
“In terms of the backlash or what people call it – we’re in 2022, history is not supposed to be hidden from anybody. And I’m not a divisive person when it comes to religion I embrace all walks of life you see it on all my platforms….My response would be its not about educating yourself on what semitism is, what antisemitism is. It’s really about learning the root words of where these come from and understanding that this is an African heritage that is also belonging to the people. Africa is in it, whether we want to dismiss it or not…” Full story on #thejasminebrand.com