On Kyrie Irving's 30th birthday, the Brooklyn Nets All-Star got one present he has been hoping for all season long–even if he's not ready to celebrate it for fear of jinxing anything. Multiple sources have reported that local athletes who are not vaccinated for COVID-19 and its variants will be able to play sports in NYC in the near future.

According to Sally Goldenberg of Politico, NYC Mayor Eric Adams is expected “to lift vaccine mandate for performers and athletes like Kyrie Irving ahead of MLB's Opening Day.”

That bombshell update came minutes after ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski and Jeff Passan reported this:

“New York Mayor Eric Adams is expected to lift the city's COVID-19 vaccine mandate on athletes Thursday, paving the way for Brooklyn Nets star Kyrie Irving to play at the Barclays Center on Sunday and for unvaccinated New York Yankees and Mets players to play in their April home openers, sources familiar with the situation told ESPN on Wednesday.”

Shams Charania of The Athletic took it one step further, signaling the actual return date for Irving at Barclays Center:

Imagine rolling up to Barclays to see Kyrie Irving, Kevin Durant and LaMelo Ball all on one court in Brooklyn with possible Play-In implications? That already figures to be a highlight reel game.

Despite not having All-NBA guard Ja Morant, the Memphis Grizzlies were able to outpace Irving and his superstar runningmate Kevin Durant on Wednesday. The Grizzlies won 132-120. But things felt quite a bit different now even after another tough loss.

Before the ruling, the Nets were clinging to the 8th seed in the East, and their road to the playoffs wasn't certain. Irving was only eligible to play in two more games. Now, he'll be able to play in all nine regular season games remaining.

Nothing is a given of course, but they've already vaulted to the top of odds makers' books. 

As Irving approached the post-game podium on his birthday, he was smiling and pleading with reporters not to ask him about the latest news on his potential full-time player status.

Once he got seated and picked up a mic, he gave a more formal version. “‘Til anything is official, please don't ask me anything about that ya'll,” Irving said. He didn't have to specify the subject which was off-limits. Everyone knew. But reporters had to ask anyway. How can we get info out of him without presenting a hypothetical? Tricky.

Irving finished with 43 points, to go with two boards, eight dimes, one block and one steal. This dude has been on some kind of heater lately.

The big game and the big news might have buoyed his mood after a tough loss.

“So you didn't hear my, you didn't hear me walk in?” Irving asked a reporter who had sought a way to get some kind of reaction from the Duke product on the biggest news of the season.

Another reporter tried another angle. When Irving was asked if he could wrap his head around the potential domino effect it could create if he were suddenly full-time, he gave what looked like a sly “I like you but you know I'm not answering this one” smile for the reporter. “MmmHm, I can't wait to talk to you guys when, something is official,” Irving said. “Appreciate ya'll,” the 2016 champion said as he walked off.

You could tell Irving was clearly in good spirits, again, despite the Nets loss. But still, he seemed a bit frustrated with the topic. Maybe the entire ordeal is just exhausting. The team has had a lot of hopes dashed to bits lately. So you can understand their reluctance to celebrate too early again. If the next media availability has an official ruling, we'll probably get a lot more out of Kyrie.