Sunday afternoon’s marquee matchup between the Nets and Knicks from the Barclays Center didn’t feature Kyrie Irving.
Still barred from playing in home games due to New York City’s private sector vaccine mandate, the unvaccinated guard moved around the arena freely as a maskless spectator and sat with his teammates courtside. During halftime, Irving joined the team in the locker room, according to The Athletic’s Shams Charania.
That decision ended up being a costly one for Brooklyn, as the team was fined $50,000 Monday for violating local New York City law and league health and safety protocols.
The widely debated mandate was at the forefront of discussion after the Nets’ 110-107 victory, with star forward Kevin Durant calling out New York City Mayor Eric Adams after the game.
“It’s ridiculous, I don’t understand it at all,” Durant said. “They lifted all of that in the arena, right? I don’t get it. It just feels like at this point now, somebody’s trying to make a statement or point to flex their authority.”
He continued, saying that he feels Adams is looking for attention.
“Everybody out here looking for attention, and that’s what I feel that the mayor wants right now. Some attention,” Durant said. “But he’ll figure out soon, he better. Are they fearing our safety? I don’t get it. We’re all confused, pretty much everybody in the world is confused at this point.
“Early on in the season people didn’t understand what was going on but now it’s just stupid. So hopefully Eric, dude, you gotta figure this out.”
Durant issued a statement obtained by Charania Monday, in which the 12-time All-Star clarified his previous remarks.
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