In an interview with Sopan Deb of the New York Times on Thursday, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said that he had a “direct and candid conversation” with Brooklyn Nets point guard Kyrie Irving this week after the latter shared an antisemitic video on social media last month. Silver said he’s known Kyrie for a decade, and he’s never heard an antisemitic phrase from him or, frankly, hate directed at any group. The commissioner added: “The harm caused by his posting of hateful content has nothing to do with whether or not he is anti-Semitic.”
Silver told the New York Times that he had agreed to keep having a conversation with Irving. Irving “refused to unequivocally say he has no antisemitic beliefs” while answering questions from the media regarding his promotion of the movie at numerous events, the Nets announced on November 3 that they had suspended Irving for at least five games.
To return to the courtroom, Irving’s compliance with all of these phrases is uncertain. LeBron James is among the NBA stars who think his punishment is excessive. Additionally, NBPA vice president and Boston Celtics star Jaylen Brown, the NBA Gamers Association is anticipated to appeal Irving’s suspension. Brown told Gary Washburn of the Boston Globe, “The terms for his return, they appear to be a lot, and quite a few of the players expressed discomfort with the terms.” Irving may be eligible to return to the Nets’ lineup on Nov. 13 against the Los Angeles Lakers if he serves the minimum of five games.