Kyrie Irving fires back at Stephen A. Smith over vaccination stance (video)
NBA superstar Kyrie Irving has grown tired of folks talking about him while allegedly misinterpreting him and calling him out of his name. Therefore, the basketball wizard has fired back with a severe rebuke of the Stephen A. Smiths of the world who have torched him nonstop for the past week.
Smith, who routinely delivers his opinions at high volume and intensity on ESPN’s “First Take,” has been very critical of Irving’s refusal to get vaccinated. The Brooklyn Nets announced on Monday, Oct. 12, 2021, that they will ban Irving from practicing or playing with the team until he is eligible to play every game, which means he’d have to get inoculated.
Irving’s choice is reportedly costing him an estimated $381K for every game he doesn’t play with the Nets.
By Wednesday evening, Irving seemed to have had enough of the backlash. He unloaded for his three million followers for almost 30 minutes on Instagram Live about how he’s going to make the best choices when it comes to his life and body.
“I chose to be unvaccinated, and that was my choice. And I would ask y’all just to respect that choice, and I am gonna just continue to stay in shape, be ready to play, be ready to rock out with my teammates, and just be part of this whole thing,” Kyrie said, adding that he has no plans to retire despite some rumors that were brewing Wednesday.
Irving seemingly called out Smith, the loudest of his critics who described his behavior on Wednesday, Oct. 13, 2021, as Irving acting “flat-out stupid” and that he needs to “get the h— on” and retire since he refuses to get vaccinated.
“Don’t believe I’m retiring. Don’t believe that I am giving up this game for a vaccine mandate. Don’t believe any of that s—,” Irving said before moving on to his TV sports critics.
“To continue to play with my name, you know to continue to play with my image, to continue to paint me in a certain type of way without me speaking … Like, these dudes are puppets!” Kyrie exclaimed as his voice rises and he gets increasingly animated. “These dudes read off scripts. They calling me unintelligent, calling me all these different types of names and they will never say it to my face.”
Irving revved it up another notch when he repeats that “they will never, ever come up to me in person and say that type of s— to my face. Ever,” he continued, adding: “They know what I stand for. I stand for so many things that are bigger than this game.”
Below is a brief snippet of Irving’s Instagram Live soliloquy below. Flip the page to view Irving’s full 30-minute rant.