NBA To Discuss Coronavirus With Team Owners On Wednesday Call

The NBA has scheduled a conference call with its team owners and governors for Wednesday afternoon, sources tell ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski and Zach Lowe (Twitter link). According to ESPN’s duo, the call will focus on the coronavirus outbreak and the next steps for teams and the league as a whole.

A previous report suggested that the NBA wanted its teams to have precautionary measures in place by Tuesday, so it makes sense that the league would follow up on Wednesday. Still, it doesn’t sound as if Wednesday’s call will just be a routine check-in.

As Wojnarowski explains in a follow-up tweet, concerns are increasing among owners and team executives that more drastic measures could be around the corner for the NBA. That includes the possibility of teams playing games with only essential personnel in arenas. A report last week indicated that the league had asked clubs to prepare for that scenario in case the coronavirus outbreak continued to worsen.

A handful of players have expressed reservations about the idea of playing behind closed doors. Goran Dragic suggested it would feel like “a pick-up game or practice,” while Kemba Walker said it would be “terrible,” adding that “they might as well cancel the whole game before that.” LeBron James issued the strongest statement on the subject, telling reporters he wouldn’t play in that scenario.

There’s no indication yet that the NBA is leaning toward going that route — we should find out more about the league’s plans following Wednesday’s conference call.

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20 thoughts on “NBA To Discuss Coronavirus With Team Owners On Wednesday Call

  1. doug.daniel243

    So I’m just gonna say it: if your afraid of getting the coronavirus chances are your not going to games anyway so why force the rest of us to stop going? The nba has already screwed up the playoffs by having 1/2 the league in a 3 month tournament that isn’t interesting for 2 1/2 of those months please don’t screw up the regular season too.

    • ChapmansVacuum

      The league and teams may not have the ability to choose. Some of this is based on local and regional goverments. If the outbreak is bad in certain areas similar to northern Italy, then you have a situation where the city or state can shutdown large gatherings taking away the NBAs choice.

      If CA or NY where cases are high shut down all gatherings of over x amount then teams in those states wont have a choice in the matter. It would also look bad for them to aggressively flaunt the warnings and disobey since if someone comes and infects lots of fans or players then after the fact they are screwed. They dont want people to die because experts tell them not to do something, but because of LeBron they do it anyways.

      LISTEN TO HEALTH EXPERTS NOT BASKETBALL STARS THAT WERE DRAFTED OUT OF HIGH SCHOOL! I love LeBron but stay in your lane buddy. Would he rather play without in person fans or cancel the 2020 playoffs and finals and waste his chance when they are looking good.

  2. amk3510

    I thought proffesonal sports leauges would be the voice of reason. Instead Silver is running into the media panic. The amount of people in the US that have the virus could barley fill up 1 section of an arena.

    • Curtisrowe

      I agree with you, but it’s a tough spot to be in. The way this is being reported everyone needs to have a “plan.” If they don’t make one they will be criticized and if they do make one they will be as well.

      It’s a no-win situation for Silver.

      • ChapmansVacuum

        The first US case where it wasnt someone being brought back from China for care was what a week ago? Now we have gone from 30 imported cases to 500+ known cases, and multiples more not yet diagnosed. Community spread is fully happening now. We are past the point of being able to stamp out the spread, and we are not able to use the draconian measures China did to curb the spread. It will continue getting worse, and a vaccine is still way off.

        At this point the response is about to shift from containment to mitigation. Where instead of trying to stop the spread they try to limit it as much as possible so the healthcare system doesnt become overwhelmed. The other main goal at this point is to prevent people who are in the high fatality brackets from getting it. They will try to safeguard retirement homes, and patients at hospitals with pre-existing conditions that cause fatality rates of like 40%.

        If with our failed testing so far we know about 500 cases that means there are probably closer to 5000+ already out there. Lots of people who are younger and healthier that have contracted it may just feel like a mild cold and be out spreading it currently.

        • x%sure

          Mostly wise, but posted again later.

          More people have covid19 than whatever number the media is flashing around because testing is so spotty (if at all). But also, it usually does not kill, and just feels like a regular cold, so does not get identified. Calling it a common cold is naive though due to the higher kill rate.

          However public-type things should get more respect as important events, valuable in keeping us rolling.

          Testing is key and can be done crudely with a thermometer, looking for over 100.4 degrees, as long as the testing personnel is external, has full authority, and uses it. The vast majority of attendees will pass. People doing work there may often fail. The presence of a testing device would embolden gatekeepers into literal restricting not just being friendly.

          It would help if this society could selectively “ban”. We are so into civil rights… the media can only jump into authority when someone is being threatened with special treatment and they can jump in.

          BTW pets getting within 6-8 feet to strangers is dangerous.

    • ChapmansVacuum

      It is highly contagious within people not yet showing symptoms and they can infect a concession stand that then infects hundreds of others.

      Playing without fans sucks, but having attendees die because they came to an NBA game is something they should avoid at all costs.

      MLB had a game in BAL against I think it was TBR where they didnt allow anyone in a few years ago. I mean it was weird hearing walkup music for batters in an empty echoing stadium, and it was strange, but it was fine and the game went normally.

      Just watch an old Expos game or any Tampa home game and you will see what professional sports looks like in basically an empty arena.

      • hiflew

        Except the NBA is far more reliant on the fans to provide an experience. With MLB, the fans are relatively far away and in most cases the games are outdoors where other sounds of the city can fill the air. In the NBA, they are in an enclosed building with the fans right on the floor with the players. It would sound like thy are playing in an abandoned warehouse. I won’t watch if it happens.

      • amk3510

        I see what your saying but the whole country isn’t quarantined. People are still going out into their everyday lives and going to an NBA game is no different. There is always a risk of catching something being next to that many people. As it is the cleanup process after a game is intense epically at arenas that share with NHL teams. Its perfectly safe for anyone with common sense.

    • ChapmansVacuum

      The first US case where it wasnt someone being brought back from China for care was what a week ago? Now we have gone from 30 imported cases to 500+ known cases, and multiples more not yet diagnosed. Community spread is fully happening now. We are past the point of being able to stamp out the spread, and we are not able to use the draconian measures China did to curb the spread. It will continue getting worse, and a vaccine is still way off.

      At this point the response is about to shift from containment to mitigation. Where instead of trying to stop the spread they try to limit it as much as possible so the healthcare system doesnt become overwhelmed. The other main goal at this point is to prevent people who are in the high fatality brackets from getting it. They will try to safeguard retirement homes, and patients at hospitals with pre-existing conditions that cause fatality rates of like 40%.

      If with our s**t testing so far we know about 500 cases that means there are probably closer to 5000+ already out there. Lots of people who are younger and healthier that have contracted it may just feel like a mild cold and be out spreading it currently.

      • HoopsR

        “The first US case where it wasnt someone being brought back from China for care was what a week ago? Now we have gone from 30 imported cases to 500+ known cases”

        Sounds like BS to me. I ain’t falling for it.

  3. x%sure

    There has to be audiences or the games are even more boring.
    They would resemble those ridiculous mini-tournament games that espn likes because they’re cheap to broadcast… Set the cameras up & use them many times instead of just once. But the fans that do show up, don’t care, and atmosphere is lost.
    The home & home serieses are always best because the home fans add atmosphere.

    Sports have always involved some amount of courage… If none is present then the odds of winning reduce, just like always.

    The danger is less because people can opt out if they’re not feeling well. Journalists & photogs however have to show up and trudge along even if they might be carrying the virus; it’s the j-o-b. A ban for them is smarter.

    Hate to say but it’s only going to be a slow-down at best. Flus go around and our immune systems will decide individually. Giving a virus a 2day run to learn about it, then exchanging our antibodies by breathing in what others breathe out, is the way humans have evolved to deal with viruses. Vaccines are so slow, at least a year away for this one. They’re flagged after going around.

  4. HoopsR

    Guys stop reading from official sources. The one thing we can all assume is that the official story is false. That is the only real thing we know about this story. The official story is false 100% of the time every single time. Research everything on your own and avoid known liars as best you can. Would you believe a government’s medical integrity when they were, not to long ago, infecting blacks with Syphilis. It’s always up to you to take the ticket or not.

  5. x%sure

    People working or just out in crowds when they should self-quarantine is a threat. We can’t really test as accurately as we would like so itcshould be okay to go overboard to some degree in denying others.

    We need to redefine “doorman” as someone bearing a forehead thermometer and a walkietalkie.

    And citizens throwing out repeat coughers should be legalized with or without devices.

    • HoopsR

      This is exactly why spreading this rumor is evil. Never let a crisis go to waste.

      • x%sure

        HoopsR is helping the virus behind the rumor by calling concern for it a rumor. He is not just waiting to say “I told you so”, he is actively trying to undermine awareness. Some help.

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