Morning Shootaround: Could Kyrie play at home?; COVID impacting Tier 1 NBA staff

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FILE PHOTO: Dec 22, 2021; Atlanta, Georgia, USA; The NBA logo is shown with a fan conduct advisory on the bottom of seats before the game between the Orlando Magic and the Atlanta Hawks at State Farm Arena. Mandatory Credit: Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports

The Nets are back in action on Wednesday with a trip to Chicago on the NBA docket. Brooklyn is coming off a rare road loss to the Portland Trail Blazers on Monday night and is in the middle of a busy stretch for the team.

Here are the stories Nets fans should be reading to start their day:

Nets News

  • How is Steve Nash handling the minutes that Kyrie Irving is getting now that he’s back in the lineup? The Nets coach is taking a “gradual and a strategic” approach for the seven-time NBA All-Star. (The Brooklyn Game)


  • There was still plenty of talk about the diving play by Nassir Little that gave everyone a scare when he took out Kyrie Irving. Little took to Twitter to defend himself. (The Brooklyn Game)


  • Out on Long Island, one of the G League Nets picked up player of the week honors. Local tryout player Craig Randall II was named player of the week by the G League for his back-to-back 40 point efforts. (The Brooklyn Game)


  • The Nets’ record against elite teams has been less than stellar this season. In fact, the Nets have failed to defeat the top-four teams in the East and West this year. That’s a problem vs. first-place Chicago. (New York Post)


  • A look at New York City’s vaccine mandate presents an interesting question for the Nets. For a small fine, is it worth letting Irving play at Barclays Center? (New York Daily News)


  • Could one of basketball’s greatest players have been a member of the New York Nets back in the day? Kareem Abdul-Jabbar recounted how he almost became a Net. (NetsDaily)

NBA News

  • Players testing positive for COVID-19 have gotten the major headlines over the last month, but the NBA has been quietly dealing with another COVID issue. There have been more than 500 confirmed cases among the league’s Tier 1 staff, which is anyone that works within 15 feet of players. Most of those cases have come over the past month as cases have surged across the NBA and country. (ESPN)


  • Across town, the Knicks and their fans are dealing with a Julius Randle issue. After his thumbs-down display last week at Madison Square Garden, the star forward scored two points against the Spurs on Monday where he was booed off the floor by the Knicks faithful. Will Wednesday night against Dallas provide an opportunity to turn things around? (amNewYork)


  • The Memphis Grizzlies have become a force to reckoned with in the NBA, led by superstar Ja Morant. They defeated the Golden State Warriors on Tuesday night and the league is taking notice. (Commerical Appeal)


  • The NBA will reach its midseason point this week. Where do things stand for the league’s MVP, Defensive Player of the Year, and Rookie of the Year race? (The Athletic)


  • Montrezl Harrell and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope combined for 28 points in the Washington Wizards’ win over Oklahoma City, but things weren’t all fine and dandy between the two. The two Wizards’ players reportedly came to blows in the locker room at halftime and had to be separated by teammates. (CBS Sports)