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“I gave up $100-something million to not get vaccinated” – Deadline

“I gave up $100-something million to not get vaccinated” – Deadline

“I gave up 4 years, $100 million and something for deciding not to get vaccinated,” Brooklyn Nets superstar Kyrie Irving said at the team’s press day yesterday. “That was the decision, it was: contract [and] to get vaccinated or not to get vaccinated and there is a level of uncertainty about his future, if he is going to be in this league, if he is going to be on this team, for this decision.”

Irving refused to get vaccinated last season, even when New York City’s mandate required it for Brooklyn Nets home games. That kept him out of Brooklyn’s rotation for much of the season, until the requirement was dropped in March.

Irving indicated that the decision was not easy.

“I had to deal with that real life circumstance of losing my job while trying to secure my future for myself and my family.”

Irving is undoubtedly a box office draw for the NBA, whether at the turnstiles or on television. It’s a safe bet that the league and the Nets are happy to have him back with teammate Kevin Durant for next season.

The team features prominently on the NBA’s national television schedule, especially in January when they will televise nationally matches with the Eastern Conference champion Boston Celtics; the red-hot Phoenix Suns, who had the best record in the NBA last season; and the rising Philadelphia 76ers with ex-Net James Harden and arguably the best big man in the league, Joel Embid.

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Irving’s stance also created problems with Nike, which was “unlikely to extend him to a similar signing deal beyond the 2022-23 season” due to uncertainty surrounding his career, it reported.reportedESPN.

It should be noted, however, that even with the Nets hesitating, Irving was still eligible for a $36 million player option for next season. It’s an amount that, for most American families, would create generational wealth.

Irving also said he believes his vaccination decision created a “stigma within my career” and that he saw his stance, in part, as intended “to be a voice for the voiceless.”

Of the situation with the team, Irving said: “I understood all the points from the Nets. And I respected and honored him, and I didn’t appreciate how being vaccinated all of a sudden became a stigma within my career that I don’t want to play or I’m willing to quit. everything to be a voice for the voiceless. And what I’m going to stand on here and say that that wasn’t the only intention I had was to be the voice of the voiceless, it was to stand on something that was going to be bigger than me and that I was going to understand probably in a distant future.

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