The apparent dissolution of the relationship follows Irving’s support of a film that espouses antisemitic sentiments and his refusal to say he does not have antisemitic beliefs. For this, the Nets suspended Irving for five games. However, there are others who support Irving, including Black Hebrew Israelites and Amazon CEO Andy Jassy, who said there were no plans to remove or put a disclaimer on Hebrews to Negroes: Wake Up Black America!
For Nike, it appears the controversy was too much to keep their partnership going.
“Kyrie Irving is no longer a Nike athlete, Nike spokesperson says. The sides have parted ways one month after Nike suspended its relationship with the Nets star. Irving has one of most popular signature shoes in the NBA and is now a sneaker free agent,” Shams Charania reported.
The report comes roughly one month after the company canceled the release of the ‘Kyrie 8’ shoes.
“At Nike, we believe there is no place for hate speech and we condemn any form of antisemitism. To that end, we’ve made the decision to suspend our relationship with Kyrie Irving effective immediately and will no longer launch the Kyrie 8. We are deeply saddened and disappointed by the situation and its impact on everyone,” the company statement said.
Meanwhile, Irving posted a GIF on Twitter Monday with the phrase, “There’s nothing more priceless than being free.”
Nike has not returned the Washington Examiner’s request for comment.