Kyrie Irving met Joe Tsai on Thursday, but he’s unlikely to return on the next road trip, report says
Kyrie Irving met Nets owners Joe and Clara Tsai on Thursday, and while that meeting was apparently productive, there doesn’t seem to be any momentum toward a return on the upcoming four-game road trip to Brooklyn, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. Irving’s suspension will last at least five games, but there is no set end point. The Nets gave Irving the following list of six steps to take before he can return to the team.
- Apologize and condemn the movie he posted on his social media accounts.
- Donate $500,000 to anti-hate causes.
- Take sensitivity training.
- Take training on anti-Semitism.
- Meet the Anti-Defamation League and Jewish leaders.
- Meet Joe Tsai to demonstrate his understanding of why his actions were wrong.
Only after taking the six steps will Irving be able to return to the ground. It is unclear at this stage what action has and has not been taken. Irving is still expected to engage with a number of constituencies, including meeting with Jewish community leaders, before he returns, according to Wojnarowski. “Clara and I met Kyrie and her family yesterday,” Nets owner Joe Tsai said. tweeted Friday. “We’ve spent some quality time understanding each other and it’s clear to me that Kyrie has no belief in hating Jewish people or any other group.”
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The Nets begin their road trip Saturday against the Clippers. After that, Irving will technically have missed five games and be eligible for a comeback on Sunday against the Lakers. However, Nets head coach Jacque Vaughn said Saturday afternoon that Irving would not be available for Sunday’s game against the Lakers.
“Joe [Tsai] released this statement yesterday, kind of shows where the collaboration and alignment is at right now, I don’t have any updates on the timeline,” Vaughn said.
When asked if Irving would be available on the road trip, Vaughn said he didn’t know.
“I don’t know, I know he’s not available tomorrow, I was told that,” Vaughn said.
Shortly after, Nets owner Joe Tsai noted that Kyrie “still has work to do” when asked if Irving would return on this road trip.
If Irving does not return on this road trip, the first possible game he could play would be November 20 against the Memphis Grizzlies in Brooklyn.
Friday, the NBPA issued a statement of his own treatment of Irving’s return. “We have worked closely with Kyrie, the Nets organization and the NBA to develop a plan to move forward through forgiveness, understanding and healing,” it read. The NBPA was adamant that “Kyrie’s rights and the rights of all future players have been protected at every turn,” according to a memo. This will make it difficult for the Nets to keep Irving indefinitely, but right now it doesn’t look like he’ll be back on this next road trip.