Storyline: Coronavirus Positives

116 rumors in this storyline

They had about four minutes. The phone call, from an official with the Oklahoma State Department of Health to a member of the Utah Jazz, was unambiguous: Rudy Gobert, the Jazz’s All-Star center, had tested positive for the coronavirus, the rapidly-spreading precursor to the condition known as COVID-19. An extremely contagious virus for which there is no vaccine, COVID-19 had already killed thousands of people in China, and was quickly working its way through Italy, where it would kill thousands more. Yet on March 11, the United States was, relatively speaking, still open for business.

More Rumors in this Storyline

As player introductions for the home team concluded, an official of the Jazz called an official of the Thunder. The two had been in regular contact for the last 24 hours, since Gobert had started showing signs of fever that weren’t dissipating. Now, there was no doubt. Even though Gobert had been kept out of Chesapeake as a precaution that night, and was still at the team’s hotel in town, he’d obviously been in close contact with several of his Jazz teammates – who were now taking the floor, along with the Thunder. There was no more time.

Fortunately, an OKC official was close enough to Donnie Strack, the Thunder’s Vice President of Human and Player Performance, to get his attention. Get the refs, Strack was told. Tell them to stop the tipoff. As Strack ran onto the court, Rob Hennigan, OKC’s VP of Insight and Foresight, started corralling the Thunder’s players and coaches. He then joined the huddle near midcourt with Strack and the referees – crew chief Pat Fraher, Mark Lindsay and Ben Taylor. The officials soon called over the respective head coaches, Quin Snyder and Billy Donovan. Seconds later, they contacted the NBA, through its Digital Operations Center, where the league monitors every game played. Usually, the biggest issue on a given night at the DOC is to help referees determine whether or not to instant replay. This was different.

“We weren’t the chief health office that night; the state and OSDH was,” Holt said. “We were trying to figure out what to do with the 21c hotel, which is where Rudy Gobert was sitting, in his room … people were coming to the lobby asking, ‘Is Rudy Gobert at this hotel?’ “I’ve got calls rolling in from the NBA, from Sam Presti. They were trying to figure out a variety of issues, including where would the Jazz sleep tonight if they couldn’t get out? Because they needed about 50 rooms, and they had checked out already … And also finding a hotel who could take in people that might have COVID-19.”

Danilo Gallinari: I’m from Italy. My country had been dealing with COVID-19 issues for more than a month at that point. Sporting events there had come to a stop. I figured maybe something had happened over here, too. But no one was telling us anything, and none of my teammates had any sort of personal experience with what the virus was doing to people like I did. So when they sent us back to the locker room, I don’t think anyone else on our team was thinking what I was thinking. They were just really confused. And the scene was unlike anything I’d ever been a part of. Our arena gets so loud during our games, but while we were walking off the court, it was like you could hear a pin drop. Back in the locker room, it seemed like we were waiting forever to find out what was going on. We were all just sitting around trying to predict what was up. After a minute or so, I spoke up. “Guys,” I said, “my guess is that this is something related to that virus. The coronavirus.”

Danilo Gallinari: As soon as I finished that sentence, a bunch of players started asking me questions. I was in the middle of the locker room just fielding questions from everybody. Guys just wanted to get information. For the most part, I wouldn’t say that anyone was scared. Me, though? I actually … was scared. I knew what was happening back in my country, and I’d had that feeling about what this might be. So I was definitely worried and scared, but mainly I just wanted to get information, too.

Danilo Gallinari: When my friend’s grandma died, the family couldn’t even see her one last time to say goodbye. The hospitals over there, they transport any deceased patients to a quarantined location for burial. But they don’t want anyone getting too close, so they don’t even tell the families where their loved ones are being taken. Can you imagine how hard that must be? Someone you’ve known and loved your entire life is just … gone. Forever. Just like that. And that situation is happening to so many families all over Italy. Once you have a parent or a loved one who is affected by the virus and they end up at the hospital, there’s a real chance that you may never see them again.

When the Pistons learned Wood had tested positive for the coronavirus, they were thoroughly briefed by the hospital regarding the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) laws, which protect the privacy of patients. “That’s why we were so mystified when it leaked out,” Casey said of a report in The Athletic. “Christian was upset his name got out there. He didn’t release it. And the worst part was it got out before Christian even had a chance to tell his mom.

“I was very unhappy about that. I told our staff, ‘This is unprofessional. This can’t happen again.’ It was so unfair to our player.” Casey said Pistons owner Tom Gores and vice chairman Arn Tellem were proactive in making arrangements for the teamwide quarantine, setting up daily phone calls with a physician so players could have their questions answered, providing the option for players to have meals delivered to their doors, and making mental health experts available to anyone who was feeling anxious about the virus and its ramifications. They also recorded temperatures twice daily from each player.
2 weeks ago via ESPN

Burke said she felt her first symptom March 11 — the same day the NBA shut down play after Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert tested positive for the coronavirus. Burke was working the Denver Nuggets-Dallas Mavericks game for ESPN, and she said she noticed feeling tired during lunch with her broadcast crew. “Man, I am so tired right now and my head is pounding,” Burke recalled thinking. “And looking back, those were my symptoms. And we’ve heard so much about shortness of breath, fever, tightness in your chest, chills, body aches, etc. … That really was my primary symptom throughout this was this extraordinary fatigue.”

Stevens said he and the rest of the Celtics have continued to check in on Smart and that the player feels good. Stevens added that he was proud of Smart for announcing his positive test and spreading the word to people to be smart and self-isolate to try to slow the spread of the disease. “Obviously this thing spreads very quickly, and doesn’t need as much contact as obviously you get when you’re in the middle of a basketball game,” Stevens said. “I’m just happy that when he tested positive he continued to experience no symptoms and has felt great ever since.

“We landed from Milwaukee 15 days ago now, and he’s been feeling good. I’ve checked in with him as everybody else has, very regularly. I’ve seen him on conference calls a few times and he seems to be doing really well. “I’m proud of how he kinda took the initiative to tell people that he had it and that he felt good and that he got online and just continued to ask people to practice social distancing and self-isolation right now. It’s a really unique, unsettling time for everyone.”

“As of today, Friday, March 27, all Utah Jazz players and staff have been cleared by the Utah Department of Health after completing their respective periods of isolation and quarantine following exposure to COVID-19. In accordance with CDC and NBA recommendations, all players and staff will continue to practice social distancing while limiting time outside of their homes to essential activities. The Utah Department of Health has determined that all Jazz players and staff, regardless of prior testing status, no longer pose a risk of infection to others “

They remember Detroit Pistons scout Maury Hanks falling through the attic floor of his house, crashing into a bedroom and fracturing his back. They remember him leaving a college scouting assignment in Charlotte, North Carolina, a driver running a stop sign and T-boning his car. Through it all, the NBA’s scouting fraternity remembers a cantankerous, caustic Maury Hanks walking back into the gymnasium, voice booming, busting chops and chasing stardust. “The ultimate survivor,” said longtime friend Scott Howard, a scout with the Denver Nuggets.

Susan happened to be watching that game. She recognized Maury from their time together at Clemson decades ago: he as an assistant coach; she as an undergraduate. She called the Nets’ offices and asked for a way to reach him. The rest is a love story that only basketball could tell. Over the past two days, Pistons GM Ed Stefanski has been sending Susan’s updates to a text chain of team executives, coaches and old co-workers. Those have been encouraging, especially given how dire things appeared mere days ago.

In an interview with L’Equipe, Orlando Magic guard Evan Fournier has strongly defended National Team teammate Rudy Gobert, who came under fire after being the first NBA player positive to Coronavirus. “It hurts me, he became the face of the virus in the NBA. The behaviour of people and journalists has been disgusting, I don’t understand taking out the names of the sick: it looks like the transfer window when it’s the scoop race. It was a coronavirus free agency, unbearable. You can say a guy is sick without naming him: today Philadelphia and the Lakers have cases and we don’t know who they are”, Fournier said.

Fournier noted that it was just that, a joke, and added that it was easier to blame him as a foreigner: “It’s typically the thing where we’re going to blame the stranger. He’s European so he brought the virus back? When we don’t know. Who says it was not Donovan Mitchell who infected him? The environment is unhealthy, not helped by what Donald Trump says. The joke with the microphones was a joke where no one had realized the magnitude of the thing. It’s easy to point the finger a posteriori. I could have made the same joke.”

Would other sports have suspended or postponed events as quickly as they did if the NBA hadn’t suspended play? Or do you think all of the coronavirus cancellations were inevitable? Charania: Eventually, it was all inevitable, I feel. In talking to NBA team executives and people around the league now, there is a consensus that a player testing positive was only a matter of time. The NBA and all of the pro sports leagues could have prolonged the inevitable. The NBA took its stand when one of its own players tested positive — and set a trend for the rest of pro sports in the U.S.

Would other sports have suspended or postponed events as quickly as they did if the NBA hadn’t suspended play? Or do you think all of the coronavirus cancellations were inevitable? Charania: Eventually, it was all inevitable, I feel. In talking to NBA team executives and people around the league now, there is a consensus that a player testing positive was only a matter of time. The NBA and all of the pro sports leagues could have prolonged the inevitable. The NBA took its stand when one of its own players tested positive — and set a trend for the rest of pro sports in the U.S.

Marrcus Smart: I was tested 5 days ago and the results came back tonight, which were positive. Ive been self quarantined since the test, thank goodness. COVID-19 must be taken w the highest of seriousness. I know it’s a #1 priority for our nations health experts, & we must get more testing ASAP

The Celtics player, who is not exhibiting symptoms, has been in isolation for several days and will continue to do so while being monitored by team medical staff. The team is awaiting further testing results and will communicate them as appropriate. Taking steps to maintain the health and safety of everyone in our organization and across the NBA remains our top priority, and we will continue to work closely with health officials and the league in addressing this situation.

As we learned NBA players on other teams had tested positive for COVID-19, we noticed that several of our players and staff had symptoms. Based on this information, and the judgment that all of our players are subject to high exposure due to the close physical nature of basketball, the communal nature of teams and the possibility of an accelerated spread from team to team, our medical experts advised that our players get tested. We sourced the tests through a private company and paid for them ourselves because we did not want to impact access to CDC’s public resources.

Using the test results, we were able to take immediate precautions and strictly isolate the players who tested positive. If we had waited for players to exhibit symptoms, they might have continued to pose a risk to their family, friends and the public. Our hope is that by drawing attention to the critical need for testing asymptomatic positive carriers, we can begin to contain the spread and save lives. We believe it is not only the right thing to do for our players and their families, it is the responsible thing to do from a medical and epidemiological standpoint.

Malika Andrews: The Nets said in a statement that their players and staff were exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19, prompting them to get tested. Full statement: pic.twitter.com/ZChF35XlKT

The reports of recent days have been multiple, and confirmed through The Athletic sourcing: Mitchell has been frustrated with Gobert in relation to his positive test. Those reports first surfaced on Thursday, the day of Mitchell’s positive test, and the day after Gobert became the first NBA player to test positive, which prompted a league-wide shutdown. They continued through the weekend, as Mitchell’s Instagram post stoked the rumors, because some of the wording is seemingly directed at Gobert. They were confirmed on Monday morning in Mitchell’s interview with Good Morning America.

Privately, according to sources, Utah hopes the time off does the team well. Neither Mitchell nor Gobert are the type to hold a grudge. Both are affable. And, privately, the Jazz know that they have doused fires before. Teammates everywhere get tired of each other over the course of a long season, and Mitchell and Gobert are no different. When Mitchell showed poor body language towards Gobert in a December home loss to the Oklahoma City Thunder, he realized his mistake and apologized to his big man. After games, their lockers are next to each other and can often be seen talking to each other about what transpired on the floor. They are without question the leaders of this team. They are both accountable to their teammates and to the media.

It took Utah Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell “a while to cool off” after he contracted the coronavirus from teammate Rudy Gobert. In a video interview Monday with Good Morning America, Mitchell, the second NBA player to test positive for COVID-19, implied that he and Gobert haven’t spoken. Gobert and Mitchell sat next to each other on the team plane and Gobert has since opened up about being careless by not taking the virus seriously, jokingly touching reporters’ microphones after an interview prior to knowing he had the virus.

In response to a question from ABC interviewer Robin Roberts, Mitchell took a big picture perspective. “I read what (Gobert) said, heard what he said,” Mitchell said. “Glad he’s doing okay, glad I’m doing well. I’m just really happy that it was only two of us. It wasn’t the rest of the (team). Neither him or I have children at home. I know some teammates who have children at home, some staff who have children at home. I’m glad we were able to contain it as much as possible.”

The first NBA player to test positive for the coronavirus, the Utah Jazz’s Rudy Gobert, released an update from his quarantine on the official NBA Twitter account on Sunday thanking fans and expressing regret for initially not taking the spread of the disease more seriously. “I’m going to start by saying thank you to all the people that have been supportive and for all the positive energy,” he said in the video. “It really means a lot. As for myself, I’ve been feeling a little better every single day thanks to the healthcare people of Utah and Oklahoma City and all the great people around me.”

Gobert had joked about the coronavirus during a news conference on Monday and then touched the microphones and recorders in front of him. Two days later, his positive test catalyzed the suspension of the NBA regular season, which prompted the rest of the sports world to effectively go on hiatus. “As you may already know, I just wanted to make sure to remind you guys to keep washing your hands frequently with soap and water,” Gobert said in the video. “Try to avoid touching your face, your nose, your eyes, and obviously try to avoid making unnecessary contact with people. It’s all about protecting yourself and the people around you. I wish I would have taken this thing more seriously and I hope everyone else will do so because we can do it together. Take care and stay safe.”
More HoopsHype Rumors
April 10, 2020 | 7:25 am EDT Update

Wizards keeping Shabazz Napier?

John Wall’s return significantly elevates expectations surrounding the Wizards next season and will make the team’s offseason decision-making process that much more important. In the case of Napier and Bertans, Washington’s general manager Tommy Sheppard talked highly of both in a Q&A with Dave Johnson Thursday. “I think with [Napier and Bertans], when we acquired them not as rentals we acquired them to stay here,” Sheppard said. “I think the players that we acquired, they’re here to show that they can be here for the future. With Davis and Shabazz, they showed enough to us that certainly we would love to retain them. We plan to.”
This rumor is part of a storyline: 24 more rumors
Napier started eight games and averaged 12.2 points, 4.4 assists, 2.4 rebounds and 1.7 steals while shooting 43.1% from the field and 38.1% from three. Based on production alone, it’s not that surprising Sheppard wants to bring the former UConn star back. However, if the Wizards can re-sign Napier this summer, they’d have quite a lot of viable point guards on their roster going into next season. Wall will be back and Ish Smith will be in the final year of his two-year contract.
He is one of professional sports most-outgoing and charismatic owners, and Mark Cuban doesn’t shy away from offering his thoughts on a wide-variety of topics. The Mt. Lebanon native and owner of the Dallas Mavericks told the PM Team he believes professional sports could have games being played in two months. “If things really go our way, it’s not inconceivable to me–and this is me being hopeful and not being scientific–that we could potentially play games in early June,” Cuban said.
But Cuban’s optimism is rooted in science and medicine. “I think we’re coming back,” Cuban said. “I can’t tell you exactly when, but this is purely a science and doctors thing. My attitude always is it’s not about if the glass is half empty or half full, it’s who’s pouring the water. In this particular case, it’s the scientists pouring the water. All I know from all the science and everything that I’m reading, I think we’re making enough advances that several of them will come through so we can start planning what a comeback would look like. I’m a big believer in American exceptionalism, and everything I’m starting to hear in terms of the science is coming along and the medical advances that we’re making to fight this thing makes me very positive. If I had to bet, and this is more a guess than a bet, I’d say early June is when you see teams start to take the field and maybe play games just for television.”
Storyline: Coronavirus
The NBA has considered a similar setup in Las Vegas. Lakers star LeBron James initially voiced his displeasure about playing games without fans but has since softened his stance. “LeBron is right. It’s hard to play without fans,” said Johnson, who stepped down as Lakers president of basketball operations in 2019. “You play one game, you’ll adjust to not having fans there. We’ve all played our whole life on the playgrounds and in pickup games without fans being there. Basketball players will know how to adjust.”
Even if Johnson admitted he is “looking forward to see if the Lakers are going to win the championship,” he seemed more concerned about the COVID-19 pandemic than worried if sports will resume. “I hope that happens. But first the players have to be safe,” Johnson said. “The numbers have to be stabilized. America and all of us who live in this great country we live in need sports, especially in a time like this. But only if everybody is safe.”
Pelicans director of mental health and wellness Jenna Rosen has been working with players twice a day with a Zoom of mental exercises and stress-relieving exercises according to Griffin. “We’re trying to be as creative as we can to have constant contact with people and make them understand that we’re still part of the same family, and family matters vitally to this group,” Griffin said. “I think our players are very close individually. I think organizationally, I think if you talk to most of the people in it, they would tell you that ‘family’ is a big focus of what we’ve brought to this, so we’re trying as best we can to connect with as many people on as many different levels as possible.”
Storyline: Coronavirus
When Thursday night’s quarterfinals action in the NBA 2K Players Tournament wrapped up, the four players remaining come from just two NBA teams — the Los Angeles Clippers and the Phoenix Suns. Young guns DeAndre Ayton and Devin Booker, both from the Suns, won their matchups, while Patrick Beverley and Montrezl Harrell of the Clippers each emerged victorious.
Storyline: eSports
The semifinals begin Saturday at 8 p.m. on ESPN. The matchups are Ayton vs. Beverley and Booker vs. Harrell, providing Suns-Clippers undercurrents in both games. Interestingly enough, both pairs were the only tournament participants from the same team among the original field of 16. Ayton faced the toughest test among the semifinalists on Thursday during his battle with Trae Young of the Atlanta Hawks. Booker cruised by Rui Hachimura (Washington Wizards) in the first game and Harrell took out No. 16 seed Derrick Jones Jr., who defeated top seed Kevin Durant during the opening game of the tournament.
“I was 26 at the time, number three pick [in the 2006 NBA draft], a really low point in my life, and I got a text from Robert Lara, the Lakers security and one of Kobe’s best friends. He said ‘Hey, what’s your address, I’ve got something in the mail for you.’” Morrison assumed he was getting a magazine from Lara, whom he had a friendship with during his time with the Lakers. “I get the package, and it’s an autographed jersey from Didier Drogba, who was my favorite player,” Morrison said. “I’m a Chelsea fan. It was from Kobe. A game-worn jersey, signed by Didier Drogba, ‘To Adam, Best Wishes.’”
“The night he passed, I’m scrolling through, reading everything, and I’m emotional,” Morrison said. “And on Chelsea’s Instagram page, it’s him with Didier Drogba holding up a jersey and it says ‘To Adam, Best Wishes.’ So he went up to my favorite player, got it signed for me without me even asking, and sent it to me when he knew I was low. It’s unbelievable. I still have the jersey. That’s what Kobe Bryant was, man. He was just one of those dudes who understood his own aura and could sense when people were down.” Morrison said he was lucky to play alongside Bryant, a five-time NBA champion, two-time Finals MVP and one-time regular season MVP. Bryant was posthumously elected to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame on Saturday.
Nonetheless, Johnson still drew parallels between HIV and COVID-19 because of the similarities regarding the misconceptions about the respective viruses, the inadequate testing, the lack of available drugs and how the pandemic has hurt the black community. “African Americans are leading in terms of dying from the coronavirus and most of them in the hospital are African American,” Johnson said. “We have to do a better job as African Americans to follow social distancing, stay at home and make sure we educate our loved ones and our family members and do what we’re supposed to do to keep safe and healthy. Then when you add that up, we don’t have access to health care, quality health care. So many of us are uninsured. That also creates a problem, too. Just like it did with HIV and AIDS.”
Storyline: Coronavirus
Consider the common perception about HIV when Johnson learned he first had it. “When I announced, it was considered a white, gay man’s disease,” Johnson said. “People were wrong. Black people didn’t think they could get HIV and AIDS.” That partly explains why Johnson went public with his diagnosis. It also partly explains why Johnson eventually raised more than $10 million for HIV/AIDs research and charities through his foundation. Nonetheless, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimated that in 2018 black people accounted for 42% of new HIV diagnoses. USA TODAY recently reported that black people are dying of coronavirus at much higher rates compared to other Americans in major cities. Johnson offered varying reasons that explain such a troubling trend.
April 9, 2020 | 9:12 pm EDT Update
Will the NBA’s indefinite suspension limit what the Warriors do with the checkbook in the offseason? “We’re looking at all of those questions and the possible answers. But I don’t really have a good sense yet because I really have no idea how this is gonna shake out,” Lacob told Tim Kawakami of The Athletic on Thursday morning. “We don’t know what the salary cap is gonna be, we don’t know what the luxury tax is gonna be. We don’t really know what we can plan on at this point. We just have to look at a lot of different scenarios. That’s what we’re doing right now. It could make a huge difference, it might make no difference.”
Storyline: Season Suspension
As Illinois goes through this together, the United Center, home of the Chicago Bulls and Chicago Blackhawks, is proud to be playing a critical role with our city, state and federal response to the pandemic. As announced on March 25, our arena and outside campus will be transformed into a logistics hub where we will be assisting with food storage for hunger relief, first responder staging and the collection of critically needed medical supplies.

Moving forward, the Greater Chicago Food Depository, Chicago’s food bank, will be utilizing the United Center as a satellite storage facility in response to the increased need for food. By alleviating space in the food bank’s warehouse, the Food Depository can bring additional volunteers into their facility to build more family food boxes in an environment that adheres to social distancing protocols. These boxes will continue to be distributed to those in need by the Food Depository’s partner network throughout Chicago and Cook County.
Storyline: Coronavirus

April 9, 2020 | 7:56 pm EDT Update

Pau Gasol contemplating retirement

With the league’s current campaign suspended indefinitely due to the global outbreak of the coronavirus, Gasol, who will turn 40 years old in July, is contemplating retirement at this point of his career. “With this recovery process and the injury that I have been dealing with for more than a year, it’s undoubtedly inevitable to think about retirement,” Gasol said in an interview with the Spanish newspaper El País, via NBC Sports. “Also, taking into account that I will be 40 years old in a few months. So, [retirement] is definitely on my mind.”
This rumor is part of a storyline: 14 more rumors
“It’s something that will come one time, sooner or later,” Gasol said of retirement. “We hope that time hasn’t come yet. But I also take the opportunity to focus on the Gasol Foundation and other off-court projects. And also think of what my next professional stage may be, my next challenges. All this while I’m still recovering, trying to give myself a chance to keep playing. Now, the priority is to overcome this pandemic among all. Everything else is completely secondary.”
In 2011, Jacob Hamilton was a 26-year-old cinematographer looking to expand his portfolio by directing a documentary. He came across a two-minute interview online titled, “The Man Who Invented the Jump Shot.” Four years later, Hamilton was screening his short film in Kevin Durant’s backyard, shocked to see one of the NBA’s best-ever jump shooters geek out over footage he’d gathered of Kenny Sailors from the 1940s. The film was still only halfway to the finish line. “Jump Shot” premiered at South by Southwest in 2019, but still hasn’t been released to the public. That will change next week, when the feature-length documentary will be available online April 16-18. Pre-order is underway at jumpshotmovie.com.
“Jump Shot” got two of its most important assists from NBA superstars Steph Curry and Durant. Hamilton had simply hoped for an interview when, through a connection between an executive producer and a chaplain for USA Basketball, the former Golden State Warriors teammates were introduced to Sailors’ legacy. The crew flew to Oakland and were invited to Durant’s home. Partway through the screening, KD asked for the film to be paused. Hamilton feared the worst, a bored millennial. In reality, the former Longhorns star was mesmerized. “These are moves that I’m doing today,” Hamilton recalls Durant telling them. “I was literally working on this in practice this week, and Kenny was doing this 60-70 years ago? This is unbelievable.”
Curry took his adoration a step further when he told Hamilton he was not only up for an interview, but wanted to get more involved. That’s how basketball’s greatest jump shooter became an executive producer. Both players are interviewed in the film, along with a lineup of basketball legends — from Dirk Nowitzki to Bob Knight, Nancy Lieberman and Clark Kellogg. Their astonishment at Sailors’ pioneering shot, particularly a photograph that appeared in Life magazine in 1946, will resonate with basketball fans.
April 9, 2020 | 6:35 pm EDT Update
When this all ends, whenever that is, what’s the one thing you’re most looking forward to doing on that first day? Dion Waiters: Just trying to hoop. Just vibe out and hoop. I’ve had damn near the whole season off. I’m trying to get back and hoop. I got something to prove at the end of the day. During this quarantine I’ve been dieting, getting my weight down, getting in shape. For me, it’s just playing basketball.
“I am in such debt to the people who worked so incredibly hard on the technical side to make what I believe is still magic — there might be some elves involved, it is Disney after all,” ‘The Jump” host Rachel Nichols told Insider. “I can’t believe that they were able to figure out a way to produce an entire television show with everybody at home, not a single person in our television facility.”
April 9, 2020 | 6:29 pm EDT Update
If nothing else at a time when the Clippers have more questions than answers amid the NBA’s hiatus because of COVID-19, the team is confident in at least one thing to be true. Should the season resume, the same roster that had been dogged by injuries since last summer is on track to be the healthiest it has been. “The Kawhi [Leonard] we’ll see will be in phenomenal shape,” coach Doc Rivers said, adding that Paul George “is another guy that’s goig to be in phenomenal shape. Reggie [Jackson], who was injured when we got him, will now be healthy.”
Since there is a pause on all roster transactions across the league, the 10-day contract Noah signed remains in effect one month later. That has left the former defensive player of the year able to work into shape under the supervision of the team’s medical and performance staffs. “It’s been great for him,” Rivers said. “There are certain individuals who this rest period, or whatever this is called, has been a benefit, and Jo is one of them for sure because he’s got a chance now to get healthy, and to get in shape and that will be a factor for him. He will be a guy that will be able to help us.”
A whopping 72% of Americans polled said they would not attend if sporting events resumed without a vaccine for the coronavirus. The poll, which had a fairly small sample size of 762 respondents, was released Thursday by Seton Hall University’s Stillman School of Business. When polling respondents who identified as sports fans, 61% said they would not go to a game without a vaccine. The margin of error is plus-or-minus 3.6%.
Storyline: Coronavirus
NBA star DeMarcus Cousins first hired Noordin Said to be his personal security guard in 2015 during All-Star weekend in New York. From there, the two hit it off, and Said worked the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro and the 2017 All-Star weekend in New Orleans at Cousins’ side. Golden State Warriors star Draymond Green hired Said to be his personal security guard during the 2018 playoffs, and Said worked this season with Los Angeles Lakers guard Rajon Rondo at most home games.
Storyline: Coronavirus
April 9, 2020 | 5:21 pm EDT Update
As the coronavirus pandemic continues across the world, NBA owners are hoping for the best but preparing for the worst. The league plans to keep all options to resume the season available for the time being, sources told ESPN, but the financial realities of the situation demand near immediate action. That has become clear in talks between the NBA, the National Basketball Players Association and player agents, sources told ESPN, as the league tries to get its finances in order in the event the rest of the season must be canceled.
Storyline: Salary Reductions
The league’s CBA includes a force majeure clause, enabling owners to cancel games and recover salary in the event of a pandemic. This clause also gives the league a 60-day window within which it can rip up the CBA entirely — effectively beginning a work stoppage. No one wants to do that. But it underscores the gravity of the situation. Still, in recent years the two sides have worked as well together as ever, and the CBA isn’t set to expire until 2024.
The agreement between owners and players in the last CBA calls for roughly splitting revenue 50/50 and also splitting the coming losses. So, the owners want to hold back a percentage of players’ checks going forward — both giving them extra money they can use now, if needed, and also to help balance the books in the event some, or all, of the remainder of the season is canceled. From an economic standpoint, both sides would prefer to limit the pain of the shutdown to only this season and not start next season with IOUs on the ledger. Setting the money aside now would help do that.
Karnisovas will have full decision making over basketball operations, including the futures of Forman, head coach Jim Boylen, and the entire coaching staff. He was even asked about Paxson, and had the option of having the organization move on from the long-time Bulls executive if that’s what he desired. However, a source indicated that Karnisovas had no issues with the Reinsdorfs keeping Paxson around.