Has the media been unfair to Kyrie Irving?

Brooklyn Nets Kyrie Irving (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)
Brooklyn Nets Kyrie Irving (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images) /

Have the media and (some) fans been unfair to Kyrie Irving?

Kyrie Irving is not a perfect person, not even close. In fairness, nobody really is, however, I’m sure even Irving would admit he’s not your usual cup of tea. There isn’t anything wrong with being different or unique from your peers, however, it goes without question that Kyrie’s comments and actions in the past have rubbed some of his former teammates and media members the wrong way.

Perhaps Irving doesn’t communicate his thoughts and feelings in the most common way, but what makes one unique, is also what makes him/her special. In the wake of a global pandemic and the systematic social rebirth of America via the BLM movement, Kyrie Irving finds himself at the forefront of a media frenzy during what could only be described as, the most challenging time in the history of modern-day sports.

The superstar guard has expressed his support for social justice reform in the past, however with the league in a state like it’s never been, the challenges that surround a return to play have become the primary topic of discussion among players and the league.

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There seems to be a disagreement between two groups of players within the NBPA. The first group is made up of players like LeBron James, Giannis Antetokounmpo, and Kyle Kuzma, who led by players’ association president Chris Paul, have carefully worked with the NBA to formulate a return to play in late July.

The other coalition has been formed by players like Dwight Howard, Avery Bradley, and Lou Williams, who have voiced their hesitation to return to play, led by the words and energy of NBPA vice-president, Kyrie Irving.

Disagreements are OK. If it were not for people disagreeing with one another, society and sports alike would have never positively developed the way it has. However, what is not OK is berating Kyrie Irving for allowing (less powerful) players to have their voices heard and considered because you selfishly want to see the NBA return. The lack of sports has been an obvious reason why we’re all currently on edge but that doesn’t mean we should push forward with it, even when we know it may not be the best thing to do so right now.

When you put all the Twitter beef and internet memes to the side, what really is Kyrie saying?

He’s saying before we sign away ourselves to complete isolation for the next couple of months potentially, with a bunch of weird social distancing rules and regulations, let’s consider if the juice is worth the squeeze, when observing the current climate of society.

What Irving is doing is effectively what most forget to do once preparing to make a big decision, he’s taking a second look. To be clear, however, there is every chance in the world that Kyrie’s reconsiderations are over the top and just plain weird, but that doesn’t mean he deserves to be aggressively criticized, blamed and berated for simply taking a second look at a huge decision for all players (not just LeBron).

Blaming Kyrie for anything remotely attached to his name has become a norm in the NBA community. As previously stated, Kyrie does not seem like the easiest person to get along with, however, attaching hate to his opinion prior to him even speaking his truth is bullying.

Again, I get Irving is a bit of an oddball, but shooting down all his ideas and mocking his intellectual capacity just because you don’t mesh with his personality or way of life is cruel, heartless, and hateful.

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Only time will tell if Irving will be remembered as a social justice hero that was well ahead of his time, or as another incredibly talented oddball that perhaps was not the ideal leader, but an artist of free thought that always did things in his own weird unique way.