NEW YORK — NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said Kyrie Irving “made a reckless decision” by tweeting out a link to a film containing antisemitic material last week, and Silver wants to know specifically why the Brooklyn guard did that.
Silver, in a statement Thursday, also said he wants to know why Irving has not apologized. Silver’s comments were the second statement the league office has issued on the latest Irving controversy, and the first in which Irving was referenced by name.
Irving and the Nets announced Wednesday, in conjunction with the Anti-Defamation League, that each would be donating $500,000 to anti-hate causes. But Irving stopped short of apologizing for the since-deleted tweet, or his comments last week that included him saying “anyone else who has criticism, it obviously wasn’t meant for them.”
Silver is clearly among those who has criticism.
“While we appreciate the fact that he agreed to work with the Brooklyn Nets and the Anti-Defamation League to combat antisemitism and other forms of discrimination, I am disappointed that he has not offered an unqualified apology and more specifically denounced the vile and harmful content contained in the film he chose to publicize,” Silver said.
Silver added that he will be meeting with Irving in person later this week. The league’s first statement, clearly in reference to Irving’s tweet, said “hate speech of any kind is unacceptable and runs counter to the NBA’s values of equality, inclusion and respect.”
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Earlier this week, the National Basketball Players Association put out similar sentiments. The NBPA also did not mention Irving by name; Irving is a vice president of the union and a member of its executive committee.
“I’m in a unique position to have an influence on my community,” Irving said last weekend. “And what I post does not mean that I support everything that’s being said or everything that’s being done or I’m campaigning for anything. All I do is post things for my people and my community and those it’s actually going to impact.”
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