NBA Won’t Pay Kyrie Irving, Other Unvaxxed Players
29 Sep 2021
CLAY: We’ve been talking about all of these crazy mandates coming out of New York City. And I would say the league that has been the most aggressive in terms of trying to mandate its players getting vaccinated, even though there’s not an official mandate, is the NBA. And New York City and L.A. will not allow NBA athletes to play in their arenas in those towns — I believe San Francisco as well — if they are not covid vaccinated.
And this is becoming a major issue, particularly in New York, with Kyrie Irving, who is a top player. Mayor Bill de Blasio was asked about that. Then there’s another crazy additional nugget here that I want to hit you with. But first let’s play cut 7 as Bill de Blasio talks about Kyrie Irving refusing to be vaccinated.
DE BLASIO: Look. I’m a fan. I’m a fan of the Nets. I live in Brooklyn. I’m a fan of Kyrie. I would just appeal to him, get vaccinated, support your fans, want to see you. We all want you back, your teammates want you back. Uh, look, there are teams now that are a hundred percent vaccinated. That’s a great example to everyone else.
REPORTER: But no wiggle room for you?
DE BLASIO: We have a rule that has to be applied whether you’re famous, whether you’re not famous, whether you’re everyday workingman or woman. Get vaccinated ’cause that’s what makes us all safe.
CLAY: So he’s not gonna be able to play, Buck — and, first of all, vaccination does not make everybody safe. We know that that’s not true even though it continues to be hammered home. But the NBA has now announced, Buck, that if you aren’t able to play because you are not vaccinated, they will not pay you your salary. So for Kyrie Irving, every game he did not play in New York would be $400,000 that he is not receiving.
BUCK: I gotta come back in another life as a top NBA player.
CLAY: Yeah, no kidding. But this is a really fascinating example of the stakes that are at play here. I’m not sure whether the NBA has the legal authority. For people out there, plays in the NBA sit out of games all the time for nonhealthy related reasons. So the idea that you could fine $400,000? Remember, he wouldn’t be able to play in over half of all Nets games because he wouldn’t be eligible to play in particular in New York City. And so this is a mess.
BUCK: And you know what I was thinking when he was doing this? De Blasio, as much as he is an ignorant commie who has ruined my home city as much as he can… There’s still a lot of great stuff in New York. I still love this place. But it’s taken a beating. Not just ’cause of covid. It’s taken a beating ’cause of de Blasio and the idiotic policies of the left. But at least they don’t have, from what I know… I could be missing something. They don’t have the same kind of baked-in double standard they do out in L.A., where essentially if you’re a celebrity, no rules.
CLAY: Actor or actress, didn’t matter.
BUCK: You know what I mean? I guess the Met Gala somehow fell under some exemption. I’d have to look at all the rules.
CLAY: It’s a great point.
BUCK: But if you’re a famous actor doing a production in Hollywood right now, you basically can get away with being unmasked. When you actually dig into all these rules, what you find out is that it’s not really about health. It’s about control, because they’ll make exceptions when they want to for whomever they want to, not every stop to think. I don’t think the virus cares how much revenue you bring in. I don’t think the virus cares how connected you are to the mayor’s office.
CLAY: Well, and those ridiculous example of that, Buck, was when Black Lives Matter protesters. Oh, they were allowed. But if you wanted to go and do anything else, no.
BUCK: There was doing us a huge favor, the Blue Check MD Brigade because if you were a person capable of thinking for oneself, you knew in June of 2020 that the Clue Check Mafia were a bunch of covid frauds.
CLAY: There’s no doubt.
BUCK: It's all so arbitrary, and they pretend it's not judgment calls when it clearly is.
BUCK: I've seen some people trying to politicize, in some way, the fact that he was double vaccinated.
CLAY: I was on talking about the importance of the First Amendment and why freedom of speech mattered in media circles.
CLAY: Man, we are making a big difference in the way that we are talking, and even other media are starting to follow our lead.
CLAY: I wonder what it’s like — and I hope I never know, and some people might say it’s already happened — to be past your mental faculties and end up with a big job.