Kyrie Irving Plays Key Role in Conference Call Featuring 80+ NBA Players

On a Zoom conference call that included more than 80 NBA and WNBA players on Friday, Kyrie Irving made a case for players to take a stand and sit out the season’s resumption in Orlando.

“I don’t support going into Orlando,” said Irving, per The Athletics‘ Shams Charania. “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.”

The call, which reportedly lasted 90-100 minutes, focused on “combating systemic racism, investing in black communities and sticking together through this process,” reports Yahoo’s Chris Haynes. Several players suggested that they’d be willing to sit out the remainder of the season, per ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.

While Irving made it known he was against resuming the NBA season, he said he would travel to Orlando if the players agreed it was the right decision.

“If it’s worth the risk, then let’s go and do it,” said Irving, per Haynes. “But if you’re not with it, it’s OK, too. We’ve got options for both ways. Let’s just come to a middle ground as a family.”

According to Haynes, WNBA players on the call vowed to stand united with the NBA counterparts, as they prepare for a season tipoff in July.

NBA players on Friday’s call included:

  • Kyrie Irving, Nets
  • Kevin Durant, Nets
  • Spencer Dinwiddie, Nets
  • Garrett Temple, Nets
  • Chris Paul, Thunder
  • Russell Westbrook, Rockets
  • CJ McCollum, Blazers
  • Carmelo Anthony, Blazers
  • Zach Collins, Blazers
  • Joel Embiid, Sixers
  • Tobias Harris, Sixers
  • Dwight Howard, Lakers
  • Avery Bradley, Lakers
  • Donovan Mitchell, Jazz
  • Mike Conley, Jazz
  • Malcolm Brogdon, Pacers
  • Myles Turner, Pacers
  • Justin Holiday, Pacers
  • Al-Farouq Aminu, Magic
  • Mo Bamba, Magic
  • Kyle Lowry, Raptors
  • Lou Williams, Clippers
  • Andre Iguodala, Heat
  • Rudy Gay, Spurs
  • Harrison Barnes, Kings
  • Mason Plumlee, Nuggets

WNBA players included:

  • Tiffany Hayes, Dream
  • Renee Montgomery, Dream
  • Kristi Toliver, Sparks
  • Natasha Cloud, Mystics

RELATED: NBA Players Planning To Take Stand Against 2019-20 Season Restart