The NBA is concerned by the latest coronavirus numbers emerging from Florida but still plans to go ahead with its plans to restart to the season in a ‘bubble’ in the state.
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Florida has seen record numbers of positive cases over each of the past three days with Saturday’s total of 4,049 a single-day high.
The NBA still intends to host players at the Walt Disney World Resort near Orlando, where the 22 teams still with play-off hopes will finish the regular season, play slated to resume on July 30. The postseason will then take place at the same site.
NBA commissioner Adam Silver acknowledged the Covid-19 spike in Florida during a recent conference call with NBA team executives.
According to ESPN, Silver sounded ‘resolute but somber’ while also expressing a resolve to continue with the league’s restart.
NBA spokesperson Mike Bass also told ESPN that ‘the league is ‘closely monitoring the data in Florida and Orange County and will continue to work collaboratively with the National Basketball Players Association, public health officials and medical experts regarding our plans.’
The NBPA also held a virtual town hall with players this week to address the concerns, according to ESPN.
‘Can’t say I am surprised, given the state’s approach to reopening,’ NBPA executive director Michele Roberts said.
‘We are obviously clearly monitoring the situation. While we take some solace in knowing our players will not travel commercially to get to Orlando, that access to the campus is severely limited and, of course, all of the other health and safety protocols in place, the numbers will keep our attention.’
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