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Kyrie Irving

Getty Nets star Kyrie Irving.

Who could have seen this coming? Outside of well, everybody in the NBA world? When the Brooklyn Nets sealed their first-round date with the Boston Celtics, everyone knew that all eyes would be on Kyrie Irving knowing his history both with his time on the Celtics and the fallout afterward. Irving left a very sour taste in many Celtics fans’ mouths after all that went down during his second and final season in Boston. So, in spite of it being revealed by Jayson Tatum that Kyrie wishes things had gone differently in Boston, there’s still quite a bit of animosity there among the fans, to say the least.

Celtics fans raining all the boos they could muster at Kyrie since coming back to Boston following his departure is nothing new. His retaliating against the boos is also nothing new considering the whole logo stomping incident from last year’s postseason. What is new for him is that he didn’t waste any time clapping back at them. During halftime of Game 1 between the Celtic, Kyrie clapped back at a heckling Celtics fan after a “You suck!” taunt.

(Warning: NSFW language)

Even though it was easy to see something like this coming, that didn’t stop social media from being put into a frenzy. Of course, most Celtics fans responded with more taunts and insults directed at the former Celtic online. However, other Celtics fans provided rational albeit strongly-worded takes on Kyrie’s antics. In short, no matter how Kyrie feels, it doesn’t change the fact that he brought this all on himself.


Kyrie Clapped Back Multiple Times During Game 1

That was not the last bit of retaliation Kyrie threw at Celtics fans for their boos and taunts. With the third quarter coming to a close and the Nets down by nine, Kyrie scored a long two-pointer with Jaylen Brown’s hand in his face. Shortly afterward, Kyrie raised his middle finger to the Boston crowd. The following clip from ESPN censors Irving’s gesture.


Kyrie gives Celtics fans the middle finger after tough jumperKyrie Irving knocks down a tough jumper from the corner and throws up a middle finger to the Celtics fans. ✔️Subscribe to ESPN+ espnplus.com/youtube ✔️ Get the ESPN App: espn.com/espn/apps/espn ✔️Subscribe to ESPN on YouTube: es.pn/SUBSCRIBEtoYOUTUBE ✔️ Subscribe to NBA on ESPN on YouTube: bit.ly/SUBSCRIBEtoNBAonESPN ✔️ Watch ESPN on YouTube TV: es.pn/YouTubeTV2022-04-17T22:04:58Z

That wasn’t the only time he flipped off the crowd during Game 1. Almost halfway through the fourth quarter, Irving was waiting along the sideline to inbound the ball. While doing so, he put both hands behind his head while making crying motions seemingly to mock Celtics fans for their taunts and boos. A camera angle directly behind Irving revealed he was flipping off the fans with both middle fingers.

(Warning: NSFW gesture)

All that’s left as of now is the inevitable upcoming fine that Irving will receive. Players who yell NSFW language at fans or flip them off usually get a fine and that’s it because it’s a one-off. However, in Kyrie’s case, he committed these actions on multiple occasions in one half, so it’ll be interesting to see how the league responds to Irving’s actions.

Celtics fans have every right to treat Kyrie however they like, but doesn’t Kyrie also have the right to treat them however he’d like?


Celtics Victory Overshadowed Kyrie’s Dominant Performance

If it weren’t for Jayson Tatum’s buzzer-beating lay-up to give Boston the 1-0 lead in this series, the narrative following Game 1 would have all been about how Kyrie shut up all of his Boston haters to pull off the upset win. It would have been deserved too.

Kyrie was nothing short of phenomenal during Game 1 between the Celtics and the Nets. In a game where Kevin Durant was off his game – 23 points on 9-for-24 shooting and six turnovers – Irving put up one of his most dominant performances in the playoffs, scoring 39 points on 12-for-20 shooting to go with six assists and four steals. 15 of his 39 points came in the fourth quarter, which included a go-ahead three with 46 seconds to go.

Among all the reasons the Nets lost, Kyrie was definitely not one of them in spite of the various obscenities that were undoubtedly shouted at him all game long. It’s clear that no matter what taunts or boos are thrown his way, Kyrie won’t be rattled by the Boston crowd until further notice.

Source: Heavy

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