While there is fear that the NBA season is lost because of the Coronavirus pandemic, owners are hopeful that the league will resume.
Such optimism came after the NBA’s Board of Governors had a call with Vivej Murthy, who is a former United States surgeon general. The meeting left the league’s stakeholders with the hope that the season could resume before July, as ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reports.
It was previously reported that owners and executives are readying themselves for the possibility of mid-to-late June as a best-case scenario for the league’s return. Multiple factors play a role in the fear. The United State’s slow response to flatten the curve of the outbreak and its ability to have testin available on a widespread basis is chief among the issues.
Teams have been told to secure arena dates well into August for the playoffs. There is the expectation that games would return without fans and some teams are looking into using their practice facilities as place to hold contest.
Additionally, the league has increased its credit line to teams, raising the amount from $650 million to $1.2 billion. The move is intended to give the franchises more cash flow while the league is suspended.
Reported NBA Coronavirus Cases Rises to Seven
Four Nets players have tested positive for the virus, as the team announced.
“The organization is currently notifying anyone who has had known contact with the players, including recent opponents, and is working closely with state and local health authorities on reporting. All players and members of the Nets travel party are being asked to remain isolated, closely monitor their health and maintain constant communication with team medical staff. The health of our players and staff is of the highest priority to the organization and the team is doing everything within its power to ensure that those affected receive the best care possible.”
Kevin Durant was among those who tested positive. The wing, who signed a four-year deal with Brooklyn over the offseason, said he is feeling good and relayed a message for everyone out there. “Everyone be careful, take care of yourself and quarantine. We’re going to get through this,” Durant said.
In addition to Durant and the three unnamed Nets players, Rudy Gobert, Donovan Mitchell and Christian Wood all have reportedly tested positive for COVID-19.
Lakers Will be Tested Next
The Los Angeles Lakers will be testing their players for COVID-19, or coronavirus, on Wednesday, as our own Austin Boyd relayed. The team squared off with the Nets in its last contest before the league suspended the season.
The Nets paid a private company to conduct the testing for the Coronavirus and the Lakers are likely to do the same. Still, the league getting so many tests while much of the world waits has drawn ire from many.
“We wish them a speedy recovery. But, with all due respect, an entire NBA team should NOT get tested for COVID-19 while there are critically ill patients waiting to be tested,” New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio tweets. “Tests should not be for the wealthy, but for the sick.”