Nets unlikely to disobey NYC vax mandate to let Kyrie Irving play at Barclays

Kyrie Irving Nets
Kyrie Irving
Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports

It’s hard to imagine the NBA or New York City for that matter, allowing the Nets to disregard health mandate so that Kyrie Irving could play at the Barclays Center.

It was an idea that was debated on social media on Wednesday after the New York Daily News reported that the Nets would only be fined as little as $5,000 max if they allowed Irving to take the court in Brooklyn despite his unvaccinated status. NYC’s vaccine mandate carries with it fines for business that violates it, but, as the Daily News points out, for the Nets it would be a financially minimal impact.

The first offense would result in a warning, the second would be a $1,000 fine, the third a $3,000 fine and after that a fine of $5,000.

However, even with the financial implications that low, the Nets would have to deal with the NBA. Adam Silver and the league office wouldn’t likely take too kind to Brooklyn disregarding previously stated league policy and a local governmental mandate.

In fact, the NBA had already stated that if a player was not vaccinated in accordance with local mandates then they would not be allowed to play in games in those jurisdictions. A league statement went on to say that any player that didn’t comply with local law “may subject him to a reduction of his compensation by the NBA or his team, and may also subject him to a fine, suspension, and/or other appropriate action.”

It’s safe to say a decision to try and skirt the current mandate would elicit a swift reaction from the league office. New Mayor Eric Adams would also likely weigh in on such a public dismissal of the vaccine order in the tune of stiffer fines or even an update to the current mandates.

The new Mayor of New York City took over on Jan. 1 and kept in place his predecessor’s vaccine mandates, which included a first in the nation private business vaccination mandate.