Could Kevin Durant’s extended absence alter Kyrie Irving’s vaccine decision so he could play more games? Not at all. Irving spoke with the media on Monday and revealed that he is stating “rooted” in his decision of not receiving a COVID-19 vaccination.
Durant has a sprained medial collateral ligament in his knee and will miss between four and six weeks. The injury is expected to keep Durant sidelined until after the All-Star game.
According to ESPN, Durant was forced to leave the game on Saturday night after teammate Bruce Brown injured his knee on a play in the second quarter.
The Nets are set to have 11 of their next 14 games on the road, allowing for Kyrie Irving to join James Harden and keep the Nets ship floating. But Irving wants the media and fans to know that the away games are the only place he will be playing.
“You bring in teams and you bring in situations,” Irving said to ESPN. “Kev’s going to heal, Kev’s going to be OK, and we’re going to have to deal with that as his teammates. But in terms of where I am with my life outside of this, I stay rooted in my decision. And that’s just what it is.
“It’s not going to be swayed just because of one thing in this NBA life. That somehow it’s brought to my attention as being more important than what’s going on in the real world. It’s just not happening for me. Again, I respect everyone else’s decision, I’m not going to ever try to convince anyone of anything or any of that, I’m just standing rooted in what I believe in. And though we’re dealing with this right now with Kev, I just know that I’m protected by the organization, I’m protected by my teammates, I’m protected by all the doctors I’ve talked to. And I just stand rooted.”
The Nets’ next game is against the Washington Wizards in DC.