The current NBA season has come to an abrupt halt on Wednesday (11 March) after a player was tested positive for Covid-19.
According to CNN, Rudy Gobert, a player from Utah Jazz, was tested positive for the coronavirus moments before the game on Wednesday night. Apparently, the league made an announcement to suspend the season starting Thursday (12 March), however, the final game on Wednesday between Sacramento Kings and New Orleans Pelicans was cancelled after the said announcement.
Following Gobert’s confirmation on the infection, all members of the Utah Jazz travelling party were tested as well, resulting in one additional positive case.
In the official statement released on the NBA website, the Oklahoma and Utah state officials said that they are working closely with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to determine “how to best move forward” as they gather more information.
The second Utah Jazz player that was also infected with the coronavirus was revealed to be Donovan Mitchell.
NBA released a letter to the fans on Facebook earlier today (13 March), stating that the hiatus will last at least 30 days and they do have the intention to resume the season when it is safe to do so. Explaining that the coronavirus pandemic is a “complicated and rapidly evolving situation”, they remarked that they are a part of a broader society with a responsibility to look out for one another.
Instagram updates from Gobert and Mitchell
Since the unfortunate piece of news broke out, both the Utah Jazz players posted on social media to update their fans. In Gobert’s Instagram post, he publicly apologised to the people that he might have endangered, hoping his story can serve as a warning to urge everyone to take Covid-19 seriously.
“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 a way to educate others and prevent the spread of this virus,” he wrote.
Gobert’s teammate, Mitchell also assured his fans and the public that he will follow the advice given by their medical staff.
Utah Jazz’s opponents to take precautionary measures
At least four teams had played against Utah Jazz recently, including the Toronto Raptors, Detroit Pistons, Boston Celtics, and the Washington Wizards. CNN reported that the players from these teams were advised to practise self-quarantine for 14 days.