Meeting with NBA Commissioner Adam Silver was not on the publicly released list of six steps Kyrie Irving had to take before he could return to the court for the Nets (although the players union may appeal that). However, it’s not a bad idea.
Silver and Irving met on Tuesday, according to multiple reports. Shams Charania of The Athletic summed it up this way:
Sources: NBA Commissioner Adam Silver and Kyrie Irving met this morning and the sides had a productive and understanding visit, paving the way for the Nets and their suspended star to work through his steps on a potential path forward.
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) November 8, 2022
Silver, who at the time had grown impatient waiting for Nets owner Joe Tsai to take more definitive action, said Irving had made a “reckless decision” to post a link for his 4.6 million Twitter followers a movie that is filled with antisemitic material — including denial of the holocaust — and much more disinformation. After a press conference where Irving was defensive and did not apologize, the Nets suspended him for at least five games (which will cost him at least $1.2 million).
Tsai and the Nets eventually laid out six steps they want to see Irving complete before his return:
1) He had to apologize publicly and condemn the movie. Irving issued an apology on Instagram, but one that said he agreed with some things in the film just not the antisemitic parts. The Nets want him to apologize publicly in a meeting with the media and be more explicit in his condemnation of the film.
2) Make a $500,000 donation to anti-hate causes. Irving has agreed to do this.
3) He must undergo sensitivity training.
4) He must undergo antisemitic training.
5) He must meet with Jewish leaders.
6) He must meet with team owner Tsai and demonstrate an understanding of his errors. Irving reportedly would not return Tsai’s texts during this incident, until he was suspended.
It is unknown how many of those steps Irving has completed. The earliest Irving could come off suspension is Sunday, against the Lakers in Los Angeles, although there is speculation around the league that the massive L.A. media market and the high-profile game may not be where the Nets decide he should return.
But Irving has met with Adam Silver. It’s another step forward.