The Trail Blazers are one of three teams reopening their practice facilities on Friday, and CJ McCollum plans to visit this weekend, writes Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports. However, McCollum remains apprehensive about the fact that team facilities are opening at all.
“I am worried like the rest of the world, but I like that it is optional and I’m pleased with the caution, structure, and measures the Blazers organization has put in place to ensure the safest environment possible for all parties involved,” McCollum said. “I get the measures (the NBA is) taking, but you have to think at some point when there are drastic measures that need to be taken, ‘Is it really worth it?’ It’s either safe or it’s not.”
As McCollum explains to Haynes, he’s unsure how the social-distancing measures in place for individual workouts will work (“They’re talking about (how) you might have to be 12 feet away from your strength coach. How are you going to lift 12 feet away from somebody?”). However, he intends to go into the Blazers’ facility on Saturday to assess whether it’s possible to safely conduct a workout with so many restrictions in place.
McCollum also admitted that it’s difficult to know how intensely to work out, since players have different regiments for the season and offseason. While he continues to prepare as if the season could be back this summer, he doesn’t know what the future holds for the league.
“I’m probably as optimistic as the casual fan,” McCollum told Yahoo Sports. “Some days you feel like there’s a chance, and then some days you’re like, ‘I don’t know.’ But in the meantime, if you go to work out at the facility, I get it. Work out, but we’ve got to figure out a balance between what’s safe and what’s forcing it.”
Here’s more on the coronavirus shutdown and the NBA’s response:
- Cavaliers big man Larry Nance Jr. tells Marc Stein of The New York Times (Twitter links) that he plans to visit the Cavaliers’ practice facility after it opens on Friday. As Stein explains, that’s significant because Nance deals with Crohn’s disease, which is generally treated with immunosuppressive medication that can make patients more vulnerable to infections. Nance has confidence in Remicade, the drug he takes to combat the disease, per Stein.
- Rockets head coach Mike D’Antoni is the league’s second-oldest head coach at age 69, which could put him at greater risk if he were to contract the coronavirus. However, sources tell Tim MacMahon of ESPN that D’Antoni would feel comfortable being on the sidelines if the NBA resumes the season, since he has confidence that Adam Silver and the league would create as safe an environment as possible.
- Appearing today on CNBC (video link), Bucks co-owner Marc Lasry expressed optimism that all NBA teams will be able to reopen their practice facilities by the end of May and that – if there are enough COVID-19 tests to make it possible – games could start by August (Twitter link via NetsDaily).