Floyd Mayweather has come to the defense of Kyrie Irving.
The world champion boxer from Grand Rapids posted a short video to social media this week supporting the Brooklyn Nets star, who has been away from the team as he continues to resist getting the COVID-19 vaccine.
Irving has resisted getting the vaccine, a decision Mayweather said he supports.
“Kyrie, what’s up? I know you’re going through a lot. We had a chance to hang out in 2016, when you represented America – when you represented the Red, White, and Blue. You only want to be treated fairly,” Mayweather said, referring to Irving’s appearance at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio.
Choice is defined as an act of selecting or making a decision when faced with two or more possibilities. America gave us the choice to take the vaccine or not take the vaccine. As time moves on, that choice is gradually being stripped from us. pic.twitter.com/7F6RsWaDkL— Floyd Mayweather (@FloydMayweather) October 25, 2021
He then proceeded to read a statement in support of Irving and the right to choose.
“America is the land of the free. Freedom of speech, freedom of religion, and supposedly, freedom to choose. Never be controlled by money,” Mayweather said. “I respect you for having some integrity and being your own man. A free mind makes his own choices, and an enslaved mind follows the crowd. Stand for something or fall for anything. One man can lead a revolution to stand up and fight for what’s right. One choice, one word, one action can change the world. It’s crazy how people hate you for being a leader. I hope your actions encourage many others to stand up and say, ‘enough is enough.’ Respect to you Kyrie and power to the people.”
Nets general manager Sean Marks announced earlier this month that the seven-time NBA All-Star will not play or practice with the team until he is eligible to be a full participant.
Under the current rules, Irving isn’t able to play games in cities with vaccine mandates including Los Angeles, San Francisco, and most importantly, New York City where half the Nets games are played.