Kyrie Irving has been speaking a lot lately, so it’s natural he’d have something to say about one of the hottest topics in basketball.
The Boston Celtics point guard commented Thursday on the knee injury that Duke men’s basketball star Zion Williamson suffered the previous night during his team’s loss to North Carolina. Williamson exited the game after just 33 seconds when his shoe exploded, causing him to slip and injure his knee. Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski told reporters Williamson’s injury is a mild knee sprain and he’ll be evaluated further Thursday.
Much of the reaction to Williamson’s injury has centered around the fault of shoe manufacturer Nike and whether the 18-year-old presumed first or second pick in the 2019 NBA Draft should sit out the rest of the season for the sake of his professional career.
When asked about Williamson’s injury, Irving, a former Duke player, called it “unfortunate” and echoed a number of NBA stars who shared messages of support.
“It’s unfortunate, especially just the situation that happen, blown out of his shoe completely,” Irving said, per The Boston Globe’s Adam Himmelsbach. “It’s not really common when you see things like that. It’s just unfortunate, especially on a big-time game like that.
“Now it’s just, instead of worrying about the injury and what he has to deal with it just becomes about his future, all the questions that are asked. So, you know, just hope he stays resilient and knows what’s important, and that’s him and his family.”
Irving commented on Williamson one day after he opened up to ESPN’s Rachel Nichols about the Celtics’ struggles in 2018-19. Many have criticized Irving’s interview, but few can find fault with his supportive stance on Williamson’s misfortune.