Amid the controversy caused by Kyrie Irving's social media activity, NBA legend Charles Barkley doubled down on why the former was wrong. Barkley, who publicly ranted about the Irving situation, went to CNN to further discuss the saga.
The NBA analyst called out Irving once more for his mistakes. This came after Irving shared a link to a problematic film with antisemitic elements. The Brooklyn Nets star is currently suspended for this, and Barkley has criticized Irving and the NBA.
"People have the right to feel and say what they want to," Barkley said. "They have freedom of speech. But there are repercussions when you say certain things. This thing with free speech has really gotten out of hand. You just can't go around insulting people and think it's OK because it's freedom of speech.
"You should be called out if you said something stupid. Hey, I've been called out many times, and I have no problem with that."
ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowksi estimated that Irving should've been back on the floor with his teammates after their game against the LA Clippers. However, the seven-time All-Star is still suspended as he tries to complete the steps demanded by the Nets organization.
On Nov. 5, it was revealed that Irving had to fulfill six steps in order to return to playing.
This isn't the first time the Hall of Famer has been critical of Irving. In the wake of the controversy, Barkley called out the star point guard on "Inside the NBA":
"I can't believe that we ain't talking about bastketball," Barkley said. "We're talking about this idiot. ... When you're somebody that's great at basketball like him, people gon' listen to what you say."
The future of Kyrie Irving in the NBA looks bleak
Kyrie Irving is undoubtedly an incredibly talented basketball player. There is no question about his on-court greatness, which has helped him become an NBA superstar. However, his actions have been the source of his downfall. This also became the reason why teams are now hesitant to get involved with him.
Last season, Irving was also in the spotlight. His refusal to get the COVID-19 vaccination caused him to miss a huge chunk of the 2021-22 campaign. Uncle Drew only played 29 games for the Nets last season due to his vaccination status.
According to Sam Amick of The Athletic, one anonymous general manager said that Kyrie Irving could've played his last NBA game prior to his suspension.
"I think Kyrie might not play in the NBA again," said one general manager, according to Amick.
This could be true as Meyers Leonard once blurted out antisemitic slurs and was quickly fined and shipped out of the Miami Heat organization.
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