Brooklyn Nets star Kevin Durant made it clear he will not try to force Kyrie Irving to get vaccinated. "I told him how important he is, how much I want him to play -- play every game," Durant said after a 121-109 loss to the Milwaukee Bucks.
"But I'm not about to force somebody to get a vaccine, like that's not my thing. So he can play basketball? Nah, I'm not about to do that. "We've had conversations about wanting him to be a part of the team and conversations about him being here full-time, but that's on his time.
Whatever decision he want to make, he's going to make. It's on us to be professionals no matter what, and do our jobs. All of us -- from the owner down to the equipment manager -- so whenever he ready, he'll be ready."
Irving was sent home at the staart of the season because he didn't want to get vaccinated. The Nets have allowed Irving to rejoin the team but he is only allowed to play road games.
Durant didn't ask Irving for an explanation
"I haven't even asked for an explanation," Durant said.
"It ain't my place I don't think. So I'm ready for whatever, that's been my whole mentality. Whatever happens in this situation, I got to still be me, still go out there and represent the way I represent.
I'm supporting whatever my team needs me to do, wants to do. "It's a weird situation, who knows? I don't understand most of this s---. COVID, all of this stuff has been crazy the last few years. So me, I just try to stay centered and focus on me.
When Kyrie's ready to make decisions for himself he will, and I trust that." Nets star guard James Harden is just happy to have Irving with the team. "It wasn't strange, nah," Harden said. "It felt good honestly to have him back.
It felt good. It felt like an extra life that we had. But we got to live with what we're dealt with and that's home games we got to figure ways [to win]. And even road games -- just 'cause Ky's on the road with us don't mean he's going to be easy for us as well.
So we got to mesh and we got to find ways to win games ... every time we step on the floor teams are going at us, they feel like they got something to prove and we got to know that. And we got to bring that same mentality towards them."