Kyrie Irving
Kyrie IrvingMarty Jean-Louis/Sipa USA via Reuters Connect

NBA player Kyrie Irving and his team, the Brooklyn Nets, announced on Wednesday that they will each donate $500,000 in the wake of Irving's controversial social media post about a book and movie that featured antisemitic tropes, ESPN reported.

Irving, the Nets and the Anti-Defamation League released a joint statement announcing the donations.

"I oppose all forms of hatred and oppression and stand strong with communities that are marginalized and impacted every day," Irving said in the statement. "I am aware of the negative impact of my post towards the Jewish community and I take responsibility. I do not believe everything said in the documentary was true or reflects my morals and principles. I am a human being learning from all walks of life and I intend to do so with an open mind and a willingness to listen. So from my family and I, we meant no harm to any one group, race or religion of people, and wish to only be a beacon of truth and light."

"There is no room for antisemitism, racism, false narratives or misguided attempts to create animosity and hate," Sam Zussman, CEO of BSE Global, the parent company of the Brooklyn Nets and Barclays Center, said in the joint statement. "Now, more than ever, there is a pressing need to ensure education in these areas. We are putting our prior statements into practice because actions speak louder than words."

"At a time when antisemitism has reached historic levels, we know the best way to fight the oldest hatred is to both confront it head-on and also to change hearts and minds. With this partnership, ADL will work with the Nets and Kyrie to open dialogue and increase understanding," Jonathan Greenblatt, the CEO of the ADL, said in the statement. "At the same time, we will maintain our vigilance and call out the use of anti-Jewish stereotypes and tropes -- whatever, whoever, or wherever the source -- as we work toward a world without hate."

The Nets said Irving and the team will work with the ADL in "an effort to develop educational programming that is inclusive and will comprehensively combat all forms of antisemitism and bigotry."

The team also said it will continue to support and participate in Shine A Light, described as "an ongoing initiative dedicated to spotlighting modern day antisemitism."

"The events of the past week have sparked many emotions within the Nets organization, our Brooklyn community, and the nation," the joint statement said. "The public discourse that followed has brought greater awareness to the challenges we face as a society when it comes to combating hate and hate speech. We are ready to take on this challenge and we recognize that this is a unique moment to make a lasting impact."

"Additionally, to ensure a sustainable and meaningful impact in driving awareness and education on the important topics of hatred based on race, ethnicity, and religion, the Brooklyn Nets, New York Liberty and the teams' affiliated organizations will host a series of community conversations at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, in partnership with ADL and other national civil rights organizations as well as local community associations."

Irving last Thursday shared a link to a documentary called "Hebrews to Negroes: Wake Up Black America," based on a book of the same name by Ronald Dalton Jr. Both the book and movie have been criticized for their antisemitic message.

Brooklyn Nets owner Joe Tsai expressed public disappointment in Irving in a tweet on Friday.

“I’m disappointed that Kyrie appears to support a film based on a book full of anti-semitic disinformation. I want to sit down and make sure he understands this is hurtful to all of us, and as a man of faith, it is wrong to promote hate based on race, ethnicity or religion,” wrote Tsai, adding, “This is bigger than basketball.”

After the uproar, Irving deleted the controversial tweet but not before he defended his right to share it, getting into a heated exchange with ESPN reporter Nick Friedell following Brooklyn’s loss to Indiana on Saturday night.

On Tuesday night, TNT basketball analysts Shaquille O’Neal and Charles Barkley ripped Irving over the antisemitic tweet, branding him an “idiot”.

The two former players also criticized the NBA’s handling of the situation and said they believed Irving should have been reprimanded and even suspended.