Kyrie Irving not expected to return to Nets this week as NBA preps investigation of maskless party appearance

Kyrie Irving Nets
Kyrie Irving
Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports/File Photo

Don’t expect to see Kyrie Irving at all this week. 

According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski and Malika Andrews, the Brooklyn Nets’ star point guard will sit out Wednesday’s game against the Knicks and Saturday’s tilt against the Orlando Magic for what has been described as personal reasons.

It was already confirmed that Irving would miss Tuesday night’s game against the Denver Nuggets, making it the fourth-straight game that he’s missed. 

During his absence, speculation has flown as to why he’s been missing in action, ranging from reports saying he just didn’t feel like playing to others stating that he is still upset with what transpired at the US Capitol last week. 

This report comes as the NBA is reviewing a video that surfaced late Monday night that caught Irving maskless at what appears to be a family birthday party. 

A report by Rob Perez of The Action Network deemed that it was his sister’s 30th birthday party at a club in West Orange, NJ. 

“We are aware of a video on social media featuring Kyrie Irving at a family gathering,” Nets GM Sean Marks released in a statement. “We are reviewing the circumstances with both Kyrie and the NBA in order to determine compliance with health and safety protocols.

“Kyrie remains away from the team due to personal reasons. A date of his return has yet to be finalized. In the meantime, we will continue to stay focused on our organizational goals. 

“Kyrie will have the opportunity to address his absence when he is ready to do so.”

This is a direct violation of the NBA’s COVID-19 protocols, which forbids players from going to clubs, bars, lounges, or gatherings of 15 people or more. 

The NBA is expected to further tighten their COVID regulations as four games were postponed over the last three days, including two on Monday. 

For every game a player misses due to league punishment for violating protocols, he will not be paid. 

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