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Nets star Kyrie Irving’s return date revealed after picking up $50,000 fine for maskless party

Kyrie Irving, Nets, Kevin Durant, James Harden

Brooklyn Nets star Kyrie Irving was fined $50,000 for violating the NBA’s health and safety protocols, the NBA announced Friday. However, the good news is Irving is now in quarantine and on track to return to the Nets on Saturday against the Orlando Magic as long as he continues testing negative for COVID-19, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.

Irving’s violation took place when the enigmatic guard went to a family birthday party last weekend. Videos leaked online showing the Nets point guard’s presence at the party, and he was maskless. In addition to the fine, Kyrie must forfeit his salary for the two games missed while in a five-day quarantine:

So, it appears as if this Irving saga will come to an end for now. He left the team for “personal reasons” last week, and for a while it wasn’t clear when he would be back in the fold.

But now that James Harden is in the picture, Irving is back and ready to form this new Big Three. The hope is Harden will also be available on Saturday, so it seems as if the Nets will be locked and loaded.

With Harden coming to Brooklyn, Irving will most likely see changes in his role. Nets head coach Steve Nash has quite the puzzle to figure out. He will have to maximize Irving, Harden and Durant, who are all ball-dominant players. Given their talent level, it’s a good problem to have.

Irving has been terrific this season when he has played. In six games, he holds averages of 27.1 points, 5.3 rebounds, 6.1 assists and 1.6 steals. These are impressive numbers in a vacuum, but these are made even more remarkable with Irving’s efficiency. He’s shooting 42.6% from long range, 50.4% on all his field goals, and he has yet to miss a free throw.