Another day gone, another day the Nets should have moved on from Kyrie Irving long ago.
The Athletic reported the controversial point guard taking to Twitter on Thursday and shared an Amazon link to the film “Hebrews to Negroes: Wake Up Black America,” based off a book largely considered antisemitic.
As of Saturday morning, the tweet is still posted. Irving hasn’t been suspended, even as Kanye West watches his empire crumble over his own antisemitic rhetoric. The Nets’ whole reaction has been one tweet from owner Joe Tsai:
I’m disappointed that Kyrie appears to support a film based on a book full of anti-semitic disinformation. I want to sit down and make sure he understands this is hurtful to all of us, and as a man of faith, it is wrong to promote hate based on race, ethnicity or religion.
— Joe Tsai (@joetsai1999) October 29, 2022
The Nets also issued a statement to The Athletic and condemned Irving’s actions, but that’s not enough and we all know it.
Don’t get me wrong, Irving has never been a stranger to controversy. Even so, this is nowhere close to anything else within his personal soap opera. This isn’t an off-hand comment about the earth being flat. It’s not worth it anymore to criticize him for not getting the COVID-19 vaccine.
Rather, this is about holding Irving accountable. Forget his talent. Being a talented scoring point guard doesn’t excuse abhorrent behavior. Irving either doesn’t understand that, doesn’t care, or both. His off-court actions define him more than his talent. If the Nets don’t take a stand and hold him accountable, then who will?
This should be an easy decision for Brooklyn too. It’s not as though the Nets’ hopes this year hinge on Irving. The team has stumbled to a 1-4 start, which looks even worse considering Irving and Kevin Durant are healthy. Not to mention, Durant asked to be traded last summer. Maybe it had something to do with Irving essentially choosing to miss 53 games last year?
One way or another, the Nets can’t just sweep this one under the rug. They just can’t. Tsai sitting down and having a heart-to-heart with Irving isn’t going to change anything. It’s just a Band-Aid until the infuriatingly talented point guard runs his mouth again. And we all know he will. If the Nets have a spine, they will not give him the chance.