The coronavirus is invading sports and NBA Commissioner Adam Silver was taking precautionary steps to not let the pandemic strike the league.
Unfortunately, before tip-off for the Oklahoma City Thunder and Utah Jazz game last night, Rudy Gobert was tested and came up positive for the coronavirus. This immediately led to the game and others being cancelled for the night, as the league sought out decisions for the future.
After cancelling the league indefinitely, the NBA has decided that it is now going to be for 30-days minimum, pending what the World Organization and CDC says at that time.
NBA To Suspend Season Following Tonight's Games pic.twitter.com/2PTx2fkLlW
— NBA (@NBA) March 12, 2020
The NBA has told its teams that the league will be suspended for 30 days, minimum.
— Bruce Arthur (@bruce_arthur) March 12, 2020
NBA owners and executives have slammed league office with a myriad of procedural and bigger picture questions. The league’s response: Sit tight until Thursday and let us work through it all. Some teams are planning to close facilities today and give players a couple of days away.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) March 12, 2020
Here’s Mavericks owner Mark Cuban saying he expects the NBA season to be postponed – not canceled. When I asked him if the NBA could play into August this year, he said: “Absolutely” pic.twitter.com/cBA92PgDLT
— Rachel Nichols (@Rachel__Nichols) March 12, 2020
The NCAA Tournament, NHL and several soccer leagues have also been suspended for the time being, as many people scramble to see if their athletes have been affected.
As far as the NBA is concerned, Toronto Raptors players have been quarantined for 14 days, several teams are testing to see if anyone contracted the virus (especially those who played against the Jazz and Gobert) and the NBA is being extremely cautious during this trying time.
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I want to thank everyone for the outpouring of concern and support over the last 24 hours. I have gone through so many emotions since learning of my diagnosis…mostly fear, anxiety, and embarrassment. The first and most important thing is I would like to publicly apologize to the people that I may have endangered. At the time, I had no idea I was even infected. I was careless and make no excuse. I hope my story serves as a warning and causes everyone to take this seriously. I will do whatever I can to support using my experience as way to educate others and prevent the spread of this virus . I am under great care and will fully recover. Thank you again for all your support. I encourage everyone to take all of the steps to stay safe and healthy. Love.
"We have a program where the next four would-have-been Mavs games, we'll pay our hourly employees as if they worked."
—Mark Cuban pic.twitter.com/Fmmj3vETUB
— Get Up (@GetUpESPN) March 12, 2020
UPDATE: Adam Silver was on Inside the NBA to talk about what is happening, saying that it was premature to say the entire season would be cancelled. He says after 30 days, they can regroup and restart the season, pushing the playoffs and NBA Finals into July. That is something that is going to be figured out in the coming days and weeks.