US basketball

Kyrie Irving unvaccinated, could miss home games

Kyrie Irving unvaccinated, could miss home games

HESITANT. Kyrie Irving is reportedly one of few NBA players who refused to be vaccinated.

Andy Marlin/USA TODAY Sports/Reuters

Local regulations in New York City and San Francisco prohibit unvaccinated players from playing and practicing in their home arenas

Brooklyn Nets’ seven-time All-Star guard Kyrie Irving remains unvaccinated, a situation that could prohibit him from playing in home games, Fox Sports reported Thursday, September 23.

Local regulations in New York City and San Francisco prohibit players from playing and practicing in their home arenas without proof of at least one shot of the COVID-19 vaccine, unless they have an approved exemption, medical or religious.

That’s according to a memo the NBA sent to every team earlier this month, which Fox Sports obtained.

Nets general manager Sean Marks said earlier this week that not every Nets player is vaccinated, without addressing Irving or any other player specifically.

“Regarding if they could play today, I can’t comment on who could play and so forth. There would obviously be a couple people missing from that picture,” Marks said. “I won’t get into who it is, but we feel confident in the following several days before camp everybody would be allowed to participate and so forth.”

The Nets open camp in San Diego for the first week and play their first preseason game in Los Angeles. There are no such regulations in LA.

The Golden State Warriors are going through a similar issue with Andrew Wiggins, who has been steadfast against receiving the vaccine.

Wiggins reportedly remains unvaccinated, jeopardizing his availability to start the 2021-2022 season.

The city of San Francisco, where the team plays its home games at the Chase Center, has required proof of COVID-19 vaccination for large indoor events since August 20.

The San Francisco Chronicle and ESPN, citing league sources, reported Wednesday that the 26-year-old Wiggins has not changed his mind about getting the vaccine since comments he made earlier this year.

“To each his own, really. Whoever wants to get it, can get it; whoever doesn’t want to get it, don’t get it,” Wiggins said on March 22. “Right now, I’m not getting it, but it’s no knock on anyone else that’s getting it. I make my own decisions. But right now, I decided not to get it.”

At the time, Wiggins said he was waiting for more information. According to the Chronicle, the Warriors put him in touch with an Oakland physician to discuss his hesitancy, but Wiggins did not change his position.

Golden State’s preseason home opener is October 6 against the Denver Nuggets. The Warriors open the regular season against the Lakers in Los Angeles on October 19 before hosting the Los Angeles Clippers on October 21.

Wiggins was the No. 1 overall pick in the 2014 NBA Draft and the 2014-2015 NBA Rookie of the Year.

He averaged 18.6 points, 4.9 rebounds and 2.4 assists in 71 games (all starts) for Golden State last season. His career clips include 19.5 points and 4.4 boards in 525 games (all starts) with the Minnesota Timberwolves (2014-2020) and Warriors. –