New York City is getting closer to removing its COVID-19 vaccine mandates, which could pave the way for Brooklyn Nets star Kyrie Irving to play in their remaining home games this season. However, there is still one obstacle that could prevent him from suiting up at Barclays Center immediately.

According to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN, the planned loosening of the COVID-19 vaccine mandates on March 7 is a big step for Irving to play home games for the Nets. However, he would still be restricted to play because of the city’s mandate for large employers. Malika Andrews of ESPN further added to that, noting the “local ordinances in place that make it so Kyrie Irving isn’t immediately able to play in Barclays.”

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As reported earlier, the relaxing of the COVID-19 vaccine mandates in New York means that Kyrie Irving can enter the Barclays Center as part of the audience but not play. While that doesn;t really make sense, as Woj and Andrews explained, the mandate for huge companies make it that way.

Despite that, the said mandates are expected to change as well and more decisions could happen in the upcoming week with regards to the rules. Considering that, it’s highly likely for Irving to get the greenlight to play at home as early as the second week of March.

Irving’s return to Barclays will certainly be a huge boost to the Nets as they look to turn their season around. They have fallen to eighth in the Eastern Conference, but as what Kyrie proved on Saturday with his 38-point explosion, he remains a threat that can impact winning.