In light of Kyrie Irving‘s reluctance to get vaccinated against COVID-19, which in turn will cause him to be eligible to compete in this season’s NBA matches has led the Brooklyn Nets to change their mind over extending his stay with the franchise.
Irving will forfeit up to $16 million in wages if he chooses to remain unvaccinated and miss all of the franchise’s games. The former NBA Champion will be a free agent if he is not offered an extension by the Nets.
“He was willing to sacrifice, at the end of the day, $16 million in salary this upcoming year and $186 million as far as an extension that he will not be offered now.” Shams Charania reported
The Nets were on the lookout to extend the Big Three’s stay with them as they look to claim their first-ever NBA Championship. But the recent turn of events have caused the board to rethink Irving’s future with the franchise.
Kevin Durant has already signed a four-year, $198 million extension with the Nets. While they have not come to an agreement with James Harden over a new contract, there is optimism across both parties to get the deal over the line. However, at the same time, Harden is also curious to enter free agency for the first time in his career.
Kyrie Irving provides an explanation behind his decision to remain unvaccinated
The root cause behind the saga is arguably Kyrie Irving’s take on the vaccine. He confirmed that he is not against the vaccine, the league, or anybody in particular. He feels that people should have a choice and should not be forced. He went on to confirm that he is not going to retire. Speaking on Instagram Live, he said:
“Once again, I’m going to repeat this. This is not about the Nets, this is not about the organization, it’s not about the NBA, it’s not politics,”
“No, I’m not retiring and no I’m not going and leaving this game like this,” Irving said. “There’s still so much more work to do and there still so many other (youngsters) to inspire, because I know they want to be better than me.”