Sports

Could the Nets’ Kyrie Irving play in home games? Rift could allow star goalie to play in Brooklyn

Could the Nets' Kyrie Irving play in home games? Rift could allow star goalie to play in Brooklyn

Seven-time All-Star Kyrie Irving recently joined the Nets part-time, with limited participation in practices and away games.

Due to New York City regulations for people not vaccinated against COVID-19, Irving is prohibited from participating in games hosted at Barclays Center in Brooklyn and Madison Square Garden in Manhattan. He is, however, allowed to train with the team as the Nets facility was considered a private building.

MORE: KD Says He Won’t Forcing Vaccine On Kyrie

According to a recent report by Stefan Bondy of the New York Daily NewsTechnically, getting the shot wouldn’t be Irving’s only way to join the Nets for games played in New York.

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What loophole would allow unvaccinated Kyrie Irving to play in Nets home games?

Bondy’s report quotes “The Key to New York”, an executive order instituted by former New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, which sets out regulations and penalties for unvaccinated people over 12 years of age.

The ordinance states that “except as provided in subsection c of this section, a covered entity shall not allow a customer, a full or part-time employee, an intern, a volunteer or a contractor to enter a covered room without presenting proof of vaccination and identification bearing the same identification information as the proof of vaccination.

While professional athletes who play for teams based outside of New York City are exempt, the above statement applies to professional athletes for New York City home teams. So what is the flaw? In short, a relatively small fine is imposed on those who violate the plan.

MORE: Irving Lost Millions Due To Missing Home Games

The first violation results in a warning, the second violation results in a fine of $ 1,000, the third violation results in a fine of $ 2,000, and each violation from that point on results in a fine of $ 5,000.

As a prospect, Irving has received 1 / 91.6 of his salary, or $ 380,000, for every home game he has missed so far in the season. By Forbes, Nets owner Joseph Tsai has a net worth of $ 8.9 billion.

Whether or not the fines are imposed on the individual or the business, the potential financial loss would be manageable for either party.

Would the NBA allow the Nets and Kyrie Irving to use this loophole?

ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski provided some clarification on this hypothetical situation, citing a September 1 NBA memo that teams must follow local laws. As such, this loophole would not allow Irving to play as it would be a direct violation of New York City law.

As it stands, Irving would only be allowed to play away games if the Nets qualified for the 2021 NBA playoffs. If they were to face the Knicks or the Raptors, he couldn’t. participate at all if he was still not vaccinated and the current rules remain in place.

If current regulations threaten Irving’s participation in playoff basketball, the team could seek exemption for their star.

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