Sun. Nov 20th, 2022
FILE PHOTO: October 29, 2022;  Brooklyn, New York, USA;  Brooklyn Nets guard Kyrie Irving (11) discusses a call-up against the Indiana Pacers at Barclays Center in the third quarter.

FILE PHOTO: October 29, 2022; Brooklyn, New York, USA; Brooklyn Nets guard Kyrie Irving (11) discusses a call-up against the Indiana Pacers at Barclays Center in the third quarter. Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports

Kyrie Irving has once again apologized for social media posts that contain anti-Semitic themes and promote a movie that might suit the Brooklyn Nets, where they will host the Memphis Grizzlies on Sunday, according to a report by ESPN.

Irving was suspended by the Nets on November 3 for his behavior on social media and missed Brooklyn’s last eight games. His meeting with Memphis is listed as suspicious.

“I am not anti-Semitic,” Irving said in an interview with SportsNet New York. “I have never been. I have no hatred in my heart for the Jewish people or anyone who identifies as Jewish. I’m not anti-Semitic or anyone.

“The not hard part is explaining myself because I know who I am, I know what I stand for. But I think the difficult thing is to process all this, to understand the power of my voice, the effect I have. I’m not anyone’s idol, but I’m a person who wants to make an impact and change.”

After criticism stemming from his social media posts, Irving said he gave “very impactful” speeches that made him understand how others were affected by his actions.

“I really want to focus on the hurt I’ve caused or the impact I’ve had on the Jewish community,” Irving told SNY. “I would like to deeply apologize for all the actions I have taken since the post was first made, by placing some kind of threat, or presumed threat, on the Jewish community.”

Nike Inc subsequently suspended its relationship with Irving and canceled the release of its next Irving-branded shoe.

Saturday’s interview was the most direct apology the seven-time National Basketball Association (NBA) All-Star has offered since he was suspended on November 3.

Before being suspended, 30-year-old Irving averaged 26.9 points, 5.1 rebounds and 5.1 assists while shooting 45.3 percent from the field in eight games, all of which were starters. The Nets won 5-3 without him, relying on Edmond Sumner to take on the more workload on the backcourt.

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