Kyrie Irving Won't Derail Nets' NBA Finals Run, Charles Oakley Says

The Brooklyn Nets are poised to win an NBA championship with or without Kyrie Irving this season … so says Charles Oakley, who tells TMZ Sports the star’s availability won’t derail the team’s title hopes.

Of course, Irving — who is not vaccinated — could miss more than half of the season due to COVID vaccine mandates in NYC and California … which has folks like Shaq saying the Nets should get rid of him.

Oakley doesn’t think KI’s absence will be that big of a deal, though … after all, it helps they still have Kevin Durant and James Harden.

“I think they can still win it with him playing this way,” Oakley said on TMZ Live this week.

“You still have James Harden and KD — 2 of the top 5 best players in the league.”

Oakley — who’s coming out with his own cooking show, “Chopping It Up with Oakley,” added, “They wasn’t healthy last year, so you think if James Harden comes back healthy this year with KD healthy, they still can win it even if Kyrie play only half of the season.”

Besides missing playing time, KI is gonna lose a TON of money — $380k per game!

So, we asked the NY Knicks legend if he was on the Nets would he talk to the point guard about his decision … he says he would but at the end of the day — “he’s a grown man.”

“He knows he losing 300, 400 thousand a game and it’s not about the money. We see that.”

“He believe what he believe in.”

No word if Irving will take the vax … but he did say last week, after shutting down reporter’s COVID questions at Nets Media Day, that “everything will be released at a due date.”

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