The absences of players linked to covid-19 marked the 2021-22 season, as did the controversies surrounding unvaccinated players. The big league has just made a very big decision on the subject, concerning the months to come. Inevitably, Kyrie Irving is one of the first concerned.
Kyrie Irving, Andrew Wiggins, Jonathan Isaac: Athletes who did not want to be immunized against the coronavirus pandemic were legion during the last campaign. If some like the Maple Jordan ended up giving in, this was not the case for all and those who remained refractory were deprived of games for a long time. However, such a scenario should not happen again from the fall, according to the latest information from journalist Vincent Goodwill:
According to a league memo obtained by @YahooSports, the NBA will not have a vaccine mandate in place next season, but will strongly suggest all personnel be up to date with vaccinations. Periodic testing of unvaccinated players could be allowed, pending discussions with NBPA
— Vincent Goodwill (@VinceGoodwill) July 26, 2022
According to a league memo obtained by Yahoo Sports, the NBA will not have a vaccination mandate in place next season, but will strongly suggest that all staff be up to date with their vaccinations. Periodic testing of unvaccinated players could be allowed, pending discussions with the NBPA.
No NBA vaccine mandate for 2022-23 season
In other words, if Adam Silver and his staff strongly want all players to be vaccinated and therefore protected as much as possible against covid-19, there will be no question of imposing it on athletes. They will not be allowed to play in the event of a positive test, but they will not be sanctioned for that. However, Kyrie Irving fans quickly saw a direct relationship with their favorite player, who missed most of the season because of this (29 games in 2021-22):
Does that override the mandates New York City and Mayor Eric Adams May have in place? Asking for a friend 😊 pic.twitter.com/6volhFxWwE
—Alexa Tsudik (@AlexaRenee189) July 26, 2022
Does that defeat the mandate that New York City and Mayor Eric Adams have put in place? I ask for a friend
Justice for Kyrie! Give him his money back
—Shmeekem (@deadboyyodie) July 26, 2022
Justice for Kyrie! Give him back his money
A priori, Kyrie Irving should not miss so many games again this season, at least not because of NBA regulations. On the other hand, it remains to be determined whether the same will apply in New York, given that the mandate against unvaccinated athletes is still in force there.