NBA veteran Ed Davis has a message for Kyrie Irving and Dwight Howard.
Irving reportedly is against the NBA returning to action at Walt Disney World Resort in July, in part because he doesn’t want to take away from the current protests on systemic racism.
The Brooklyn Nets guard, who drew opposing views from Austin Rivers, Kendrick Perkins and Charles Barkley, would not be playing once the league returned due to shoulder surgery. Dwight Howard agreed with Irving, telling CNN entertainment basketball “isn’t needed at this moment” with everything going on surrounding the deaths of Breonna Taylor, George Floyd and Ahmaud Arbery.
But Davis has a different opinion. The Utah Jazz big man said it’s easy for Irving and Howard to say they don’t want to play when they’re in the position they are financially.
“It’s easy for a guy like Kyrie to say that he’ll give everything back (for social reform), but would he really give everything back?,” he told Hoopshype.com. “It’s easy for Dwight Howard to say that we don’t need to play when he’s in Atlanta in his $20 million mansion. But there are other guys on the rosters who need this money to provide for whoever they’re taking care of and things like that. It’s easy for the superstars in the league to say this and how they feel about this and that. But it means a lot more when it comes from the role players and the guys that (aren’t stars).
“There are so many different perspectives because there are so many different levels in the NBA. Like I said, it’s so easy for the superstars to say, ‘Let’s just not play,’ and they’re good. But some guys can’t just do that. There are lives on the line and, like I said, generational wealth on the line. These are the hits that we’re going to take if we don’t play.”
Davis’ argument certainly is valid, especially considering Irving is sidelined with an injury. And while some NBA players do have lucrative contracts, not everyone is as fortunate.