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Nets teammates defend Kyrie Irving after Bondy tweet

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Atlanta Hawks v Brooklyn Nets Photo by Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images

The Nets players have said their group chat has sustained them during their shared COVID-19 nightmare. It’s been their own private place. Now, what may or may not have been said on the chat has become news. Stefan Bondy tweeted that Kyrie Irving suggested on the chat that NBA players form their own league. Several of his teammates called him out, saying it’s fake news.

The controversy started at around 6:30 with Bondy’s tweet...

It didn’t take long for Irving’s teammates to respond. First was Theo Pinson...

Then, after Bleacher Report picked up Bondy’s tweet, it was Chris Chiozza’s turn...

Responses weren’t limited to Twitter. Caris LeVert went on Instagram, using the cap emoji —signifying an untruth or a lie— to express his feelings. Pinson agreed.

Assistant Coach Adam Harrington also seemed to express skepticism.

Even Fred VanVleet of the Raptors got on board...

Taylor Rooks of Bleacher Report, who’s friendly with Irving, said that Irving did not say what Bondy wrote ... and added he had left the team chat...

Ryen Russillo of The Ringer later tweeted out his own take. He said Irving had mentioned something similar in the past, but provided no details on whether it was a serious proposal or idle chatter.

But then before midnight, Bondy seemed to take a step back, clarifying his earlier remarks...

Overnight, Irving posted a series of messages and quotes from black activists from Tupac Shakur to Mohammed Ali to Angela Davis on his Instagram page.

Irving, of course, has been at the center of a players’ union debate on whether NBA players should go along with the Orlando “bubble” or use their time and resources on promoting social justice in the wake of the killing of George Floyd by Minneapolis police three weeks ago.