Recently, Brooklyn Nets superstar Kyrie Irving tweeted out a video that promoted antisemitic views. Naturally, he received tremendous backlash for aligning with a problematic cause. The film he promoted on his Twitter was called “Hebrews to Negroes: Wake Up Black America”. This post gathered so much attention Nets owner Joe Tsai released a statement on behalf of the Nets that they don’t share the same sentiment.
“I oppose all forms of hatred and oppression and stand strong with communities that are marginalized and impacted every day,” Irving said. “I am aware of the negative impact of my post on the Jewish community and I take responsibility. Do not believe everything said in the documentary was true or reflects my morals and principles.”
I’m disappointed that Kyrie appears to support a film based on a book full of anti-semitic disinformation. I want to sit down and make sure he understands this is hurtful to all of us, and as a man of faith, it is wrong to promote hate based on race, ethnicity or religion.
— Joe Tsai (@joetsai1999) October 29, 2022
As a result, fans came out in support of their faith and decided to sit courtside during the Nets game to troll and send a message to the world but most importantly Kyrie Irving. He’s been asked by the media since the tweet what were his motives and what did he mean by them. In response, Irving responded to what many consider poorly.
Kyrie Irving is asked if he has any anti-Semitic beliefs: pic.twitter.com/hHI8FFqMbs
— Nets Videos (@SNYNets) November 3, 2022
How was the NBA affected by Kyrie Irving?
Nonetheless, NBA commissioner Adam Silver wasn’t too fond of Irving’s comments. Later, he released a statement on the behalf of the NBA addressing the hurtful and distasteful sentiment from Irving’s tweet. While Irving has taken positive steps toward amending the people he’s offended by donating $500,000 to fight hate, Silver felt required to speak kind words to the masses.
“Kyrie Irving made a reckless decision to post a link to a film containing deeply offensive antisemitic material. While we appreciate the fact that he agreed to work with the Brooklyn Nets and the Anti-Defamation League to combat antisemitism and other forms of discrimination, I am disappointed that he has not offered an unqualified apology and more specifically denounced the vile and harmful content contained in the film he chose to publicize. I will meet with Kyrie in person in the next week to discuss this situation.”
Statement from NBA commissioner Adam Silver, stating in part, his disappointment in Kyrie Irving for not issuing an “unqualified apology”. He also said he will meet with Irving in the next week pic.twitter.com/yw95pv0y9W
— Vincent Goodwill (@VinceGoodwill) November 3, 2022