Boston Celtics forward and NBPA vice president Jaylen Brown said he and others in the players union have issues with the requirements the Brooklyn Nets have given Kyrie Irving for his reinstatement.
Brown told the Boston Globe on Monday that Irving is set to meet with NBA commissioner Adam Silver on Tuesday, and that the NBPA plans to appeal Irving’s suspension.
"The terms for his return, they seem like a lot, and a lot of the players expressed discomfort with the terms," Brown said, via the Globe.
Irving was suspended from the Nets for at least five games last week after he endorsed an antisemitic film on social media and repeatedly refused to apologize, condemn antisemitism or back down from his stance. He later apologized on Instagram, though not until the Nets suspended him.
Irving also reportedly did not respond to multiple texts from Nets owner Joe Tsai about the controversy.
In order for Irving to be reinstated, he must reportedly:
Issue a verbal apology and condemn the antisemitic film
Share the apology on social media
Complete sensitivity trainings
Meet with Jewish leaders in the Brooklyn community
Meet with Tsai
Make a $500,000 donation to anti-hate causes
These requirements are coming from the Nets, not the league — which told Yahoo Sports last week it was “unaware of the depth of what Irving was asked to fulfill by the team.”
Still, Brown said he thinks that those requirements are way too harsh. After Irving meets with Silver, he hopes the league and the NBPA can set guidelines to better handle similar situations in the future.
“I don’t believe Kyrie Irving is antisemitic,” Brown said, via The Globe. “I don’t think people in our governing bodies think he’s antisemitic. He made a mistake. We understand from an outside perspective how important sensitivity is to not condone hate speech and not condone anything of that nature. It’s sensitivity to the dialect around that.
“We don’t want to stand up for somebody in order to not condemn hate speech, but I don’t believe Kyrie Irving is antisemitic. And hopefully the NBA feels the same way … There is an interesting distinction between what somebody says verbally and what somebody posts as a link on a platform with no description behind it. Some people will argue there’s no difference and some people will argue there is a difference. There’s no language in our CBA. There’s no rules against it. This is uncharted territory for everybody, and everybody is trying to figure out the difference between the two.”