Kyrie Irving could join the Nets as soon as Sunday

Suspended All-Star guard Kyrie Irving The process needed to return to play is nearing completion, and he could rejoin the Brooklyn Nets for Sunday’s game against the Memphis Grizzlies at Barclays Center, sources told ESPN.

Irving will miss his eighth straight game Thursday night in Portland, but he is nearing the end of his suspension after nearly two weeks, sources said.

“Kyrie continues his journey of dialogue and education,” Tamika Tremaglio, executive director of the National Basketball Players Association, told ESPN on Wednesday night. “He is fighting the full weight of the impact of his voice and actions, especially in the Jewish community. Kyrie rejects anti-Semitism in any form and is committed to bettering himself and increasing his level of understanding. He plans to continue this journey. Make sure his words and actions in the future follow truth and knowledge.” have to do.”

Tremaglio and the union worked closely with Irving, the Nets and the NBA to help him draft his own solutions to end the suspension, sources said. What may have started as a strict list of prerequisites has evolved into Irving taking ownership of the process himself, which the Nets and the league believe is what sources said.

Irving is serving a minimum five-game suspension without pay for initially failing to apologize and condemning a social media link to a movie filled with anti-Semitic material.

Irving’s apology — posted on his Instagram account hours after his suspension was announced Nov. 4 — came on the heels of two news conferences and a public statement issued with the Nets that did not include an apology or reprimand.

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Irving met separately with Nets owner Joe Tsai and commissioner Adam Silver, and both publicly stated that they did not believe Irving was antisemitic.

At the time of Irving’s suspension, the Nets released a statement saying, “The failure to deny anti-Semitism when given a clear opportunity is deeply troubling, contrary to the values ​​of our organization, and constitutes conduct harmful to the team.”

In a memo to NBPA members Friday, the union told NBA players that “Kyrie’s rights and the rights of all future players are protected at every turn.”[s] We will resolve all matters as soon as possible to the satisfaction of all parties.

The NBPA described the recent meetings as “an effort to deepen understanding and open up clear communication among all parties.”

The Nets are 4-3 without Irving during the suspension, including a 153-121 loss to the Sacramento Kings on Tuesday night. Brooklyn is 6-9 overall, 5.5 games behind first-place Boston in the Eastern Conference standings.

Irving, 30, is averaging 26.9 points, 5.1 rebounds and 5.1 assists for the Nets this season.

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