The NBA and the National Basketball Players Association have reached an agreement to halt drug testing for players during the league’s current coronavirus-related hiatus, reports Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports. Sources tell Haynes that the agreement is temporary.
Players are typically subject to up to four random drug tests during the season and two more during the offseason, per the league’s Collective Bargaining Agreement.
Punishments, including lengthy suspensions or banishments, are severe for players who test positive for performance-enhancing drugs or drugs of abuse, while testing positive for marijuana use results in more modest discipline, starting with fines.
According to Ian Begley of SNY.tv (Twitter link), the pause on drug testing is meant to address concerns regarding the proximity of drug testers and the sensitivity of drawing blood during the coronavirus outbreak.