Wed. Dec 7th, 2022

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Brooklyn Nets owner Joe Tsai and the organization itself issued rebukes of Kyrie Irving on Friday after the team’s All-Star point guard took to social media a day earlier to promote an anti-Semitic book and film.  

On Thursday, Irving posted a tweet and Instagram story that included the Amazon link to a film entitled “Hebrews to Negroes: Wake Up Black America,” which is based on a book of the same name written by the film’s director, Ronald Dalton, Jr.

Late Friday, Tsai responded to Irving’s posts by sharing his thoughts with the actions of one of the team’s core players. “I’m disappointed that Kyrie appears to support a film based on a book full of anti-semitic disinformation,” Tsai tweeted. “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. This is bigger than basketball.”

Earlier on Friday, the Nets shared a statement condemning Irving’s posts. “The Brooklyn Nets strongly condemn and have no tolerance for the promotion of any form of hate speech. We believe that in these situations, our first action must be open, honest dialogue. We thank those, including the ADL [Anti-Defamation League], who have been supportive during this time.”

Irving has been known to share controversial opinions and ideas. He missed most of last season due to his refusal to get vaccinated for COVID-19, tweeting that the mandate to do so was “one of the biggest violations of HUMAN RIGHTS in history.” He has also suggested that he believes that the Earth is flat, and in October, he shared a 2002 video from Alex Jones about a conspiracy from a group called the “New World Order.”

The Nets have announced no discipline for Irving at this point, but he and the team failed to come to a contract extension in the offseason. That means he will be an unrestricted free agent after the season, and controversies like this won’t help him land another long-term deal.

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