The Brooklyn Nets have a lot to look forward to after the All-Star break. Goran Dragic is the newest member of the team, Kevin Durant is expected to return sometime soon, and Ben Simmons is ‘weeks’ away from making his season debut. However, that’s not all. All of the signs are pointing towards Kyrie Irving becoming a full-time participant in time for the playoffs.
Before the start of the 2021-22 season, Brooklyn released a statement that made it clear that Irving wouldn’t be allowed to be a part-time participant. A couple of months later, Sean Marks and the organization backtracked on that statement and paved the way for the guard to make his season debut on Jan. 5 in Indiana.
Since then, Irving’s only been allowed to play in games on the road. He had to sit out when the Nets traveled to Madison Square Garden on Feb. 16 and he’ll have to do the same on Mar. 1 when his team travels to Toronto, barring any sudden change.
Irving’s said numerous times that he won’t receive the COVID-19 vaccine. If he did so, he’d be allowed to play full-time. Unless New York City lifts its vaccine mandate, he’ll continue to play under a part-time role, but it seems as if things are trending in Irving’s favor.
Kyrie Irving could soon be a full-time player for the Brooklyn Nets.
That’s big news from New York City Mayor Eric Adams, who was elected in Nov. of 2021.
Here’s his full quote:
In the past week, cities such as Washington, D.C., and Chicago have announced that their vaccine mandates will be lifted at the end of February.
Last Wednesday, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver made an appearance on ESPN’s ‘Get Up’ and questioned the validity of NYC’s mandate. Irving isn’t eligible to play at Barclays Center or MSG, although unvaccinated opposing players on teams outside of the city can play in both arenas.
Irving and Marks have both said numerous times that they’re ‘optimistic’ that Irving will be able to return to the court full-time this season. According to Adams, it’s likely going to happen sometime “in the next few weeks.”
Brooklyn will host Boston on Thursday night without Irving before traveling to Milwaukee on Saturday. Irving will be able to play against the reigning defending champions for the first time this year. The Bucks blasted the Nets 121-109 at Barclays on Jan. 7, two days after Irving made his debut.
The sooner that Brooklyn can get Irving back full-time, the better. Even after adding a few key players over the past couple of weeks, the Nets need to be able to consistently rely on their seven-time All-Star point guard.