Kyrie Irving On Call Featuring 80 Players: ‘I Don’t Support Going Into Orlando’ Amid Nationwide Unrest

A group of 80 NBA players, including Kyrie Irving and Chris Paul, met on a call to discuss their concerns surrounding the season’s potential resumption amid nationwide protests and unrest. 

Irving, who set up the call, stated that he doesn’t support the league resuming in Orlando out of support for civil justice reform. The call reportedly lasted one hour and 40 minutes. 

“I don’t support going into Orlando. I’m not with the systematic racism and the bullshit. … Something smells a little fishy. Whether we want to admit it or not, we are targeted as black men every day we wake up,” said Irving.

Avery Bradley, who spoke after Irving, said that now was time to “play chess, not checkers.”

Other players on the call included: Carmelo Anthony, Donovan Mitchell, Dwight Howard, Malcolm Brogdon, CJ McCollum, Joel Embiid, Justin Holiday, Spencer Dinwiddie, Harrison Barnes, Al-Farouq Aminu, Tobias Harris, Kyle Lowry, Mike Conley Jr., Zach Collins and Myles Turner. 

Anthony reportedly stressed the importance of unity and allowing young players to have a voice, while Howard added that playing games will only serve to distract the country from its current issues.

Mitchell spoke of his injury concerns due to a lack of being in a competitive environment, saying that “we’re taking a big (injury) risk.” 

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