The National Basketball Association suspended its season following the news that a Utah Jazz player tested positive for COVID-19, also known as the Coronavirus.
The player, All-Star center Rudy Gobert, had missed time earlier in the week due to illness, and had previously mocked the precautions being taken against the COVID-19 spread. With reporters barred from entering the team's media room, Gobert deliberately touched every microphone and voice recorder in front of them.
According to a Thursday Tweet from ESPN NBA Insider Adrian Wojnarowski, a second player on the Utah Jazz, Donovan Mitchell, also tested positive for the coronavirus. His tweet cites Gobert's carelessness in the locker room.
"Jazz star Donovan Mitchell has tested positive for the coronavirus, league sources tell ESPN," Wojanrowski's tweet reads. "Jazz players privately say that Rudy Gobert had been careless in the locker room touching other players and their belongings. Now a Jazz teammate has tested positive."
Jazz star Donovan Mitchell has tested positive for the coronavirus, league sources tell ESPN. Jazz players privately say that Rudy Gobert had been careless in the locker room touching other players and their belongings. Now a Jazz teammate has tested positive.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) March 12, 2020
Shams Charania, another NBA Insider with The Athletic and Stadium, reported that Gobert and Mitchell were the only two Jazz players to test positive. But as the Post notes, the Boston Celtics, Detroit Pistons, Toronto Raptors, Cleveland Cavs and New York Knicks have all played the Jazz in the last 10 days and are being told to self-quarantine. 30 teams have either had direct or indirect contact with Gobert in the last five days.
Sources: Donovan Mitchell was the only Jazz player/personnel to test positive for coronavirus out of 58 tests administered on Wednesday night. Remaining tests came back negative.— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) March 12, 2020
In an official announcement released on March 11, the NBA writes its “suspending game play following the conclusion of Wednesday's schedule of games until further notice.”
In the statement, the NBA writes that “a player on the Utah Jazz has preliminarily tested positive for COVID-19.”
According to the announcement, the positive test result was reported just prior to the tip-off of Wednesday's game between the Jazz and Oklahoma City Thunder in Oklahoma City. The affected player was reportedly not in the arena, and the game was immediately cancelled.
The statement concludes, “The NBA will use this hiatus to determine next steps for moving forward in regard to the coronavirus pandemic.”
The NCAA announced on March 11 that March Madness will go on as scheduled, though no fans will be allowed to attend games. The NCAA COVID-19 advisory panel recommended that all upcoming sporting events also be held without spectators.
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