2021 NBA Media Week

Kyrie Irving remotely joins Brooklyn Nets Media Day

Irving repeatedly asked for privacy when pressed about his vaccination status, says status will be cleared up at the appropriate time.

Brian Mahoney | The Associated Press

Kyrie Irving joins media day via Zoom.

NEW YORK (AP) — Unable to attend the Brooklyn Nets’ media day, Kyrie Irving asked for privacy Monday when pressed about his vaccination status and availability for home games.

On a bizarre day in which comedian David Letterman was present but Irving wasn’t, the All-Star guard spoke via Zoom through a monitor set up in the interview room at Barclays Center. New York has a mandate requiring COVID-19 vaccinations for athletes who play in or practice in the city.

Irving wouldn’t say if he has received a shot or if he intended to get one. If a player is not vaccinated, he would be forced to sit out the Nets’ home games.

“There’s just a lot of questions about what’s going on in the world of Kyrie and I think I’d love to just keep that private and handle it the right way with my team and go forward together with a plan,” Irving said. “So obviously I’m not able to be present there today, but that doesn’t mean that I’m putting any limits on the future of me being able to join the team.”

Big expectations lie ahead for the Nets, but they might face disruption along the way.

The Nets are hosting their training camp in San Diego, so Irving would be able to participate. They will return to Brooklyn after playing their exhibition opener in Los Angeles next Sunday.

“Please, everything will be released at a due date and once we get this cleared up,” Irving said. “As of right now, please just respect my privacy regarding anything — home games, what’s happening with vaccination.”

The players who were asked about Irving said they weren’t concerned. That included Kevin Durant, who was asked after getting a few comedic questions such as why he was nicknamed “KD” from Letterman, who said he was reporting for Basketball Digest.

“It’s on Kyrie and that’s his personal decision,” Durant said. “What he does is not on us to speculate what may happen, but we trust in Kyrie. I expect us to have our whole team at some point.”

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