Kyrie Irving has missed home games for the Brooklyn Nets, throughout this season due to the vaccine mandates in New York. The mandate does not allow unvaccinated players of the home team to play in an enclosed environment (indoor stadiums).
It has been a chaotic season for the Brooklyn Nets because of this very mandate. Kyrie Irving was forced to sit out the season because he was unvaccinated. The Brooklyn Nets said that they will not employ Kyrie as a part-time player at the beginning of the season. Soon they were forced to change their tune because of Kevin Durant’s injury.
Kyrie being unvaccinated and unavailable at home games is a major reason that James Harden wanted to leave Brooklyn. James is quoted as saying that if needed he would administer the vaccine himself. Soon after that, there were reports from Brooklyn that James was unhappy with the part-time situation and that Kyrie himself wanted James traded.
It seemed that rumours were true as James went back to the time he was trying to get out of Houston. He scored 4 points in 37 minutes against a mediocre Sacramento Kings team. The team then went on to win 11 straight games before James was traded. Even though in this circumstance it wasn’t Kyrie’s fault that he was unavailable, a reluctance to sacrifice for his teammates hurt the relationship between him and Harden.
Now there are reports that the mandates will be changed. Eric Adams, who is the current mayor of New York and the former president of the Borough of Brooklyn, has ties with Brooklyn Nets owner Joseph C Tsai. With the mandates gone, Ben Simmons and Kevin Durant returning, and Kyrie Irving joining the group, Brooklyn is going to be a Juggernaut once again and will be one of the most dangerous teams in the NBA.