Kyrie’s suspension: What did Jewish NBA player Deni Avdija say about Irving’s controversy?
Brooklyn Nets star Kyrie Irving caused a stir after posting a link to an anti-Semitic video. The only Jewish player in the NBA weighs in on the matter.
Brooklyn Nets star point guard Kyrie Irving posted a link to an anti-Semitic film last week, and he has had to face the consequences of his actions. The team suspended him for at least five games, and Nike has put their relationship with him on hold. Both actions will cost him millions of dollars.
The only Jewish player on an NBA roster, Washington Wizards forward Deni Avdija, gave his two cents on the matter.
Avdija on Kyrie
“I think he made a mistake,” according to the 21-year-old.
“But you need to understand he gives an example to people and people look up to him. You can think whatever you want, you can do whatever you want, [but] I don’t think it’s right to go out in public and publish it,” he said.
“I love my culture, I love my country, and it’s a little upsetting to hear some stuff about your religion.”
Avdija was born in a kibbutz in Israel to a Jewish mother and a father from Yugoslavia. He played with Maccabi Tel Aviv before he was selected ninth overall by the Washington Wizards in the 2020 NBA draft.
Avdija: Consequences needed for players’ actions
“There needs to [be] consequences for the actions that players do. It needs to be known there’s no room for words like that,” said Avdija, adding that he hopes Irving was sorry for what he said.
The Nets guard initially refused to apologize for what he did, but after the franchise suspended him, he showed remorse for his post and told the Jewish community that he was “deeply sorry” for any pain he may have caused.
Reports indicate that Brooklyn has given Irving a list of requirements he needs to comply with to be allowed to rejoin the team, including apologizing on both traditional and social media, attending sensitivity trainings, and meeting with members of the Jewish community in Brooklyn.