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Now a New Muslim, NBA Star Kyrie Irving Talks about Ramadan

After embracing Islam, the Brooklyn Nets star Kyrie Irving has announced he is currently observing Ramadan fasting with fellow Muslims worldwide.

The announcement came after the Brooklyn Nets defeated the Boston Celtics 109-104 on Friday night as Irving spoke after the game saying he is part of the Muslim community and what it’s like observing Ramadan, Yahoo Sports reported.

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“All praise is due to God, Allah, for this… For me, in terms of my faith and what I believe in, being part of the Muslim community, being committed to Islam, and also just being committed to all races and cultures, religions, just having an understanding and respect,” Irving said.

“But yeah, I am taking part in Ramadan with a lot of my Muslim brothers and sisters. And it’s been an adjustment. That’s really what I can say. It’s just being committed to my service to God, Allah, and then continuing on with whatever I’m guided with.

“I’m just happy to be part of my community and doing the right things. So, fasting is definitely is definitely part of it — if you know anything about the Muslim community. But yeah, just really blessed and grateful to be taking part of this.”

This is the first time that Irving, 29, has discussed Islam publicly. He has made reference to it several times before on social media posts.

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After the announcement, he caught some flak for sitting out for personal reasons on April 13, the first full day of Ramadan.

Yet, several fans came to Irving’s defense on social media. 

Former NBA player Stephen Jackson, who is also Muslim, supported Irving on Instagram.

Irving was named the Rookie of the Year after being selected by the Cleveland Cavaliers with the first overall pick in the 2011 NBA draft.

A seven-time All-Star and two-time member of the All-NBA Team, he won an NBA championship with the Cavaliers in 2016.

In 2016, Irving helped Team USA win the gold medal at the 2016 Summer Olympics. With the win, he became just the fourth member of Team USA to capture the NBA championship and an Olympic gold medal in the same year, joining LeBron James, Michael Jordan, and Scottie Pippen.

With his conversion to Islam, Irving has now joined the list of many other NBA stars who are now part of the Muslim community.

Earlier this year, American former professional basketball player Stephen Jackson converted to Islam. Also in November 2020, Dutch boxer Ruby Jesiah Mesu announced converting to Islam on her official social media account, after practicing the faith for years.

A few months earlier, in April 2020, Wilhelm Ott announced that he had converted to Islam. Ott is a professional MMA (Mix Martial Arts) fighter from Austria.

Legendary American basketballer Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is a well-know Muslim convert, as he embraced Islam in 1968, before joining the NBA.