LeBron James: Kyrie Irving "should be playing" after apologizing for antisemitic film post
Why it matters: James is arguably the biggest star in the league and the most notable NBA player to support Irving's return to the NBA amid the controversy surrounding Irving's promotion of an antisemitic film.
Driving the news: "I told you guys that I don’t believe in sharing hurtful information. And I’ll continue to be that way but Kyrie apologized and he should be able to play," James tweeted. "That’s what I think. It’s that simple."
- James said Irving is "not the person that’s being portrayed of him" and that Brooklyn's list of requirements for Irving's return to the court "is excessive."
Catch up fast: The Brooklyn Nets suspended Irving without pay for at least five games after he failed to make an apology over sharing a link to a movie that contained antisemitic material, Axios reported.
- The Nets had multiple asks of Irving in order for him to return the court, including apologizing and condemning the film, donating $500,000 to anti-hate causes, completing sensitivity and antisemitism training, meeting with the Anti-Defamation League and Jewish leaders, and speaking with Nets owner Joe Tsai to show his understanding of the situation, per NBA reporter Shams Charania.
Irving issued an apology in an Instagram post shortly after he was suspended, saying the film had false, antisemitic language.
- "To All Jewish families and Communities that are hurt and affected from my post, I am deeply sorry to have caused you pain, and I apologize," he said.
- "This ain't right," James tweeted. "There is no place for misogyny, sexism, and racism in any work place. Don’t matter if you own the team or play for the team."