Ahead of the game against the Sixers, Nets head coach Steve Nash said he didn’t know why Irving was out. Nash he told me he reached out to Irving but received no response, and reiterated after the game that it was a private matter. Caris LeVert added that Irving texted the team to inform them of his decision, and said it was a personal issue, but did not disclose any other information.
At this point, Irving’s justification for sitting down remains unknown, and it would be unwise to speculate further. If Irving wants to share his reasoning, he will. After a short road trip to Memphis, the Nets will return to Brooklyn for home games against the Thunder on Sunday and the Nuggets on Tuesday. It is not known when he will return to the lineup.
The Nets are also currently without their other star, Kevin Durant, after being exposed to COVID-19 and forced to self-quarantine for seven days. Durant, who had already had COVID-19 last year, tested negative throughout the process. If that trend continues, Nash expects him to be cleared and back on the pitch on Sunday.
When he’s been on the court this season, Irving has been fantastic, averaging 27.1 points, 6.1 assists and 5.3 rebounds, while also making an early push for the 50/40/90 club. He’s shooting 50.4% from the field, 42.6% from the 3-point field and 100% from the free throw line.