Former Cavaliers star Kyrie Irving didn’t exactly get a warm welcome in Cleveland on Monday night, and it cost him.
The Nets point guard was fined $25,000 by the NBA after viral videos showed Irving cussing at some Cavs fans heckling him in Brooklyn’s 114-107 loss at Cleveland’s Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse.
“Got y’all a championship, and you motherf–kers still ungrateful,” he hit back at hecklers — one of which asked if Irving needed his former Cavs teammate, LeBron James.
“I’m ungrateful for you,” a Cleveland fan can be heard saying in clips of the back-and-forth.
Irving was part of the 2015-16 LeBron James-led Cavs team that won Cleveland its first championship in 52 years against the Warriors. His huge 3 pointer in Game 7, with 53 seconds left is a moment that’s still celebrated amongst Cavs fans.
On Thursday, the NBA announced it was fining Irving for “directing obscene language toward a fan.”
In videos from the exchange, one person can be heard asking, “Kyrie, you need LeBron?”
“It’s just one,” another heckler said about Irving’s championship rings.
Irving tallied 27 points, seven rebounds, nine assists and a single steal in Monday’s loss — his fourth game back since the team announced his return as a part-time player.
The seven-time NBA All-Star is only permitted to play in away games, with the exception of New York and Toronto, which require players to be vaccinated against COVID-19.
On Monday, Irving said in a post-game press conference that he is “rooted” in his decision to not get vaccinated against the virus. He addressed the topic for the first time in an Instagram live video last October.
The Nets play the Spurs on Friday in San Antonio, where Irving is eligible to play under his part-time player status.