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Brooklyn Nets guard Kyrie Irving got into an argument with a reporter regarding a tweet linking to an antisemitic film.
Brooklyn Nets guard Kyrie Irving is in the news following his social media activity. Back in September, Irving shared a conspiracy theory by Alex Jones. This past week, Irving sent out a tweet linking to a film that is filled with antisemitic messaging.
The latter caused both the Nets and owner Joe Tsai to release statements condemning Irving’s tweet.
After the Nets 125-116 loss to the Indiana Pacers, Irving spoke to the media. During the press conference, Irving got into a contentious back-and-forth with ESPN reporter Nick Friedell.
Kyrie Irving gets into verbal back-and-forth with reporter over antisemitic tweet
Irving first addressed the Jones conspiracy theory, saying that he does not stand with what he said about the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre. Jones was ordered to pay nearly $1 billion in damages to the families of eight of the victims of the Sandy Hook massacre after he spread the conspiracy that it was “a hoax.” Yet, Irving said he believes the specific conspiracy theory of the Jones video he shared was “true.”
That is when things got contentious, with Irving taking exception to his tweet being called a promotion. Irving repeatedly said “let’s move on” before alleging that Friedell was “dehumanizing” him and that “[he] can post whatever [he] wants” after the reporter pushed back. Irving’s session with the media ended shortly after that.
You can watch the full press conference in YES Network’s tweet below:
The tweet in question is still on Irving’s account, yet to be deleted.
Earlier Saturday, Irving tweeted that he “meant no disrespect to anyone’s religious beliefs” before saying that “the ‘Anti-Semitic’ label that is being pushed on me is not justified and does not reflect the reality or truth I live in everyday.”
I am an OMNIST and I meant no disrespect to anyone’s religious beliefs. The “Anti-Semitic” label that is being pushed on me is not justified and does not reflect the reality or truth I live in everyday. I embrace and want to learn from all walks of life and religions.
— Hélà (@KyrieIrving) October 29, 2022
Prior to the game, the NBA released a statement that condemned hate speech.
In Tsai’s statement, the Nets owner said that he wants “to sit down” with Irving and to make sure he knows “it is wrong to promote hate based on race, ethnicity or religion.”