Here is the full IG live from Kyrie. I know some here said "I wont waste my time listening to the whole thing" but you should. Because you are going off like a 10 second sound bite when he talks for 20 minutes and responding to media headlines that dont even discuss what he talked about in length... which was, pretty well said regardless of if you agree with him or not
Some other main points....
1) He isn't trying to be "woke" he even criticizes himself for being "too woke" in the past and trying to make everyone see things his way. in his own words "ive said some of the stupidest things ever in the past". He straight up is like, I think its a personal choice, i feel im entitled to my choice, and i dont think peoples choice/livelihood should be taken away.
2) The safety thing. The idea that he is some enormous threat to the teams safety is absurd. 1) he isnt with the team currently. even when he was practicing, he had to go through tons of protocols which included multiple daily tests, masking, contact tracing, etc... If you do the math on the odds that he: Was asymptomatic, had MULTIPLE false negative tests, infected someone else who was vaccinated despite the protocols the odds of that happening are like .0001%. He is more likely to accidentally injure someone in a drill then give them COVID under the circumstances.
AGAIN: I still think its dumb he isnt vaccinated, but the idea there is some enormous risk for the nets to have unvaccinated members is absurd. Hell I believe its 9 teams are practacing/playing with unvaccinated players still. Their cities just dont have mandates. The entire team played an entire season together unvaccinated before the vaccine was out. The team played most of last year with multiple unvaccinated players (again no mandate at that time).
3) Kyrie points out he didnt create the mandate, he is reacting to this like others are. he says he was assured there would be exemptions for players and expected to just play, and then it turned out otherwise. He says he doesnt want to lose money or not play, but your person, yourself, your family those things are bigger then basketball and money. He feels he needs to stay true to himself (And whether you agree with his stance or not, he should be afforded that freedom).
4) Despite reports he states clearly 3 seperate times there is no animosity with the team, his teammates, or the NBA. He says he doesnt/wont retire and plans to play. Plans to pursue a title with the Nets (encouragement he will play this season).
5) He points out some flaws in the mandate without going to detals on reasons (Which he says is intentional he doesnt want to make it a debate about reasons, but about choices). But does point out the mandate is not applied equally (i.e. vistors/visiting players dont need abide by it, but the nets players do. Teachers/nurses need to abide by it, but not cops/fireman -- something many female politicians pointed out, that intentional or not jobs with a high female demographic are included under the mandate but jpbs with high male demographic are excluded).
Whether you believe some, all, or none of what he said or agree with none of his stance on the vaccine/mandate, what he is doing is at least reasonable and nothing millions of other New Yorkers dont also agree on/are handling the same way.
Bottom line. The mandate applies to 2 of 50 states and not to visitors only the home team. If we were in any of those 48 states this would be a non-issue. people can make it about safety but no one really had a problem with players playing before the vaccine was available and no one has issues with games going on in those 48 states if players arent vaccinated. It is unfortunate luck for us.
Kyrie is free to his choice. sucks for fans, but its his right and people can paint it otherwise or say it otherwise or his haters have wished it was some anti-vaxx conspiracy but everything he spoke on, at the very least, is somewhat reasomable even if you disagree.
People say he is making it up or backtracking but those are his words, choosing to instead believe what some media reporter says over his own words is your perrogative and not some universal truth.
Hopefully once games start and now that his message is public he will get on the court and fight this mandate with his money and not with his unity of not getting the shot.