Kyrie Irving Speaks on Returning to Brooklyn Nets Practice

The Nets stated in October that Irving will be sitting out the season due to NYC’s vaccination mandate.

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Kyrie Irving has opened up about his return to the Brooklyn Nets practice floor for the first time in months.

Brian Lewis of the New York Post shared on Twitter that the NBA star, who was confirmed to be sitting out the rest of the season in October, “missed” the game: “Last night I could barely sleep. I’m like, man, I just don’t want to come out and not be who I know I am as a player…(My) heart racing and just not being nervous and touching the basketball again, and just the rhythm of the game. I missed it.”

Irving also revealed that he “respected” the decision the Nets made when they told him that he was unable to play unless he abided by New York City’s vaccination rules: “I understood their decision and I respected it. I really had to sit back and try not to become too emotionally attached to what they were deciding to do. I had to sit down and really evaluate things and and see it from their perspective.”

Until he is vaccinated, Irving is unable to participate in home games due to NYC’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate, which requires people 12 years old and above to present proof of vaccination in several establishments including the Barclays Center, which is the Nets’ home court. The organization allowed him to return to practice in mid-December, with GM Sean Marks stating, “Several months ago we made a decision that was based around what was best for the team. What was best for the team at that point was continuity and I think we all see that continuity right now over the course of the last week and whatever the future looks like maybe out the window for a while, and we’ve got to navigate that as best we can.”

Elsewhere in sports, LeBron James is the third NBA player in history to score 36,000 career points.

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