BOSTON (CBS/AP) — Kyrie Irving went to social media to respond to his critics, shortly after Boston Celtics fans heckled him Wednesday night at TD Garden, even though he wasn’t there.
Irving, the former Celtics star who signed with the Brooklyn Nets as a free agent over the summer, was scheduled to make his return to Boston Wednesday when the Nets came to town to play the Celtics. But Irving missed the game with a sore shoulder and did not travel with the Nets to Boston.
The Garden crowd came to heckle him, even in his absence.
Posters branding him as a coward decorated the arena entrance. A few fans who showed up wearing his No. 11 Celtics jersey with the words “Where is?” written on tape above his name.
During the introductions, with Irving nowhere to be seen, the first “Kyrie Sucks!” chant broke out; it was repeated about a dozen times throughout the game.
About an hour after the game ended, Irving posted a long Instagram story calling sports and entertainment “ignorant and obtrusive.”
“It’s one big show that means very VERY little in the real world that most people live in,” the lengthy and rambling post said before concluding with: “Don’t fall for the Game that’s played in front of you for Entertainment, it’ll never be as serious dealing with LIFE.”
The Celtics beat the Nets, 121-110. Kemba Walker, who replaced Irving over the summer, scored 39 points in his first game back after leaving the court on a stretcher, with his neck in a brace.
The teams play each other again on Friday in Brooklyn. The Nets return to Boston March 3.
(© Copyright 2019 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)