Eric Adams: NY athletes who cant play due to vaccines not top concern – New York Post

Eric Adams: NY athletes who cant play due to vaccines not top concern – New York Post
Uncategorized

Mayor Eric Adams brushed aside questioning Wednesday about unvaccinated New York Yankees and Mets being barred from playing home games — insisting he’s looking out for the health of the Big Apple’s population as a whole while promising to come up with a “solution” for pro baseball players who haven’t received a jab. 

During an unrelated press conference in Queens, Adams also said he would keep removing COVID-19-related regulations — but on his own timeline, not one dictated by professional sports teams’ schedules.

“We’re going to continue to peel back, but let’s be clear: Everyone that’s focusing on a sports area, they’re focusing on one person,” he said in response to a question about The Post’s Wednesday front page on the potential for stars on both New York baseball teams not being allowed to play at home.

New York City Mayor Eric Adams
New York City Mayor Eric Adams insisted he’s looking out for the health of NYC’s population as a whole.
Dennis A. Clark
Kyrie Irving #11 of the Brooklyn Nets drives to the basket against the Orlando Magic in the first half at Amway Center on March 15, 2022 in Orlando, Florida.
Kyrie Irving has been playing in away games but not ones in New York City.
Mark Brown/Getty Images

But Adams seemed to home in on Nets star Kyrie Irving, who is not allowed to play at the Barclays Center because of the private-sector employee vaccine requirement.

“I’m focused on 9 million people,” Adams said. “And so, I am not looking at one person, I’m looking at my city not closing down again, not having to deal with this crisis again.”

“We’re going to peel back like we did with the Key to NYC, like we did with children, we are continuing to do so,” the mayor added. “But I’m not going to be rushed in based on a season schedule. I am going to do this right for the people of the city, and I’m not focusing on one individual; I’m focusing on 9 million people.”

Kyrie Irving #11 of the Brooklyn Nets reacts off the front row as he attends today’s game as fan along side his wife Marlene Wilkerson and his sister Asia (Irving is unable to play due to covid mandates) during the second half when the Brooklyn Nets played the New York Knicks
Kyrie Irving is not allowed to play at the Barclays Center because of the vaccine requirement.
NY POST Photo/Robert Sabo
Brooklyn Nets guard Kyrie Irving acknowledges fans while leaving the court after scoring 60 points in the team's NBA basketball game against the Orlando Magic, Tuesday, March 15, 2022, in Orlando, Fla.
Kyrie Irving is a 29-year-old, seven-time NBA All-Star who has not received a COVID-19 vaccine.
AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack

The mayor’s remarks come a day after The Post confirmed that when MLB’s season begins, Mets and Yankees players who have not been vaccinated against COVID-19 will not be allowed to play at Citi Field or Yankee Stadium. For the Bronx Bombers and the Amazin’s, Adams vowed to work with MLB to arrive at an unspecified “solution” before the teams take the field in early April.

“We’re going to do an analysis. Baseball season is not tomorrow. It’s not next week. We are going to work this out. We will ensure the safety of New Yorkers without continuing the spread of COVID,” he said Wednesday.

“I’m looking forward to speaking to Major League Baseball, as we put our heads together with our medical team and figure out how we come up with a solution here. That’s my goal. My goal is to come up with a solution where we’re safe, to get our economy back up and operating and don’t change the progress we have made.”

Pedestrians wearing protective masks walk along Broadway in the SoHo district of New York, Friday, March 4, 2022. Mayor Eric Adams announced in a morning news conference that the city will be scaling back of COVID-19 mask and vaccine mandates.
Eric Adams scrapped the municipal “Key to NYC” program.
AP Photo/John Minchillo
A general view of a "stop, proof of vaccination required to enter" sign as seen on a building in New York, NY on March 9, 2022.
Eric Adams also said he would keep removing COVID-19-related regulations.
Christopher Sadowski

Adams’ answer also comes after he earlier this month scrapped the municipal “Key to NYC” program — a program enacted last summer by former Mayor Bill de Blasio and initially maintained by Adams.

It required proof of COVID-19 vaccination to enter many kinds of indoor settings, including sports venues, restaurants, bars and movie theaters. But the rule exempted members of professional sports teams who do not live in New York City as well as non-resident performing artists.

On Wednesday morning, Adams noted it was that specific component of the city’s now-removed indoor venue vaccine mandate that he has deemed unfair, not the private-sector vaccine requirement, which he has maintained.

Orlando guard R.J. Hampton (13) and Brooklyn guard Kyrie Irving (11) chase the ball  during an NBA basketball game, Tuesday, March 15, 2022, in  Orlando, Fla.
Kyrie Irving was able to sit courtside in street clothes on Sunday at the Barclays Center.
Stephen M. Dowell/Orlando Sentinel via AP
New York City Mayor Eric Adams
“I’m focused on 9 million people,” Eric Adams said.
REUTERS/Elizabeth Frantz

“I think it was unfair for the city to state that players who have come from outside the city can play and those who are on New York City sports teams are not allowed to play,” he said. “We’re going to continue to evaluate and shift and make sure we’re safe. That’s the only answer I can give you.”

During the press conference, the mayor also claimed compulsory inoculation rules against COVID-19 allowed professional basketball teams to play their full season without stoppages, and credited them with allowing the five boroughs to not return to the early days of the pandemic.

“The NBA has a season because of mandates. They didn’t have to cancel the season because we have mandates in place,” he said. “We are here while schools are open, businesses are open, our city is not being closed down, our hospitals are not being overrun. This is why we’re here.”

Kyrie Irving #11 of the Brooklyn Nets greets Kevin Durant #7 of the Brooklyn Nets as he attends today’s game as fan (Irving is unable to play due to covid mandates) at the end of the second half when the Brooklyn Nets played the New York Knicks. The Brooklyn Nets defeat the New York Knicks 110-107 Sunday, March 13, 2022, at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn.  Brooklyn Nets won 110-107.
The Nets were fined $50,000 for allowing Kyrie Irving into their locker room.
NY POST Photo/Robert Sabo
Brooklyn Nets forward Kevin Durant #7 and Brooklyn Nets guard Kyrie Irving #11 embrace e on the court after the game when the Brooklyn Nets played the New York Knicks Sunday, March 13, 2022,
Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving embrace on the court after the game when the Brooklyn Nets played the New York Knicks, Sunday, March 13, 2022.
NY POST Photo/Robert Sabo

Meanwhile, Irving —  a 29-year-old, seven-time NBA All-Star who has not received a COVID-19 vaccine — has been playing in away games but not ones in New York City. Irving was able to sit courtside in street clothes on Sunday at the Barclays Center where the Nets faced off against the Knicks, because the city’s indoor venue vaccine requirement has been lifted while the private-sector worker one remains in place.  

The Nets were subsequently fined $50,000 for allowing the star guard into their locker room.