Patty Mills has been watching the Novak Djokovic lack-of-vaccination saga from afar, and the Nets' Australian-born guard doesn’t think that the superstar tennis player should get any kind of special treatment.
Said Mills when asked Wednesday if he thought rules should apply equally to everyone: "Yeah. I won an Olympic medal and quarantined in a hotel by myself for two weeks. As much as a buzzkill as it was to [not] go home and celebrate, I’ve done it."
Mills went on to say that Australia, which is 90% vaccinated, has to be very cautious when it comes to public health measures.
"I think my perspective is from coming from a small community and a small place, especially in an indigenous population where this kind of thing can run through a whole community and generation very quickly," he said. "So, I guess my understanding is that doing your part to look after the community is important, 100%."
Mills, of course, is a teammate of Kyrie Irving, one of the most famous unvaccinated athletes. Irving, however, has abided by the rules and does not play in New York or Toronto, where local COVID-19 ordinances prevent him from doing so.
Tremendous opportunity for rookie
Heading into Wednesday night’s game at the United Center, undrafted rookie David Duke Jr. had started four straight games for a team of championship caliber.
Duke never envisioned this scenario when he signed a two-way contract with the Nets this past summer.
""I can’t say that I expected anything," the forward from Providence said after the shootaround Wednesday. "To just play honestly has been more than I can say I expected."
For Duke to play in the playoffs, the Nets would have to create room in the rotation for him. Coach Steve Nash said that there are several players vying for a spot as a regular complementary player.
"Everyone is kind of still in the running to take the bulk of those minutes," Nash said. "So until we see someone that really takes it — and takes it for a while — we’ll probably continue to mix it up and give guys different opportunities."