Jazz Players Donovan Mitchell, Rudy Gobert Positive for COVID-19; NBA Cancels Season
The players made their own announcements, while neither the NBA nor the Utah Jazz named them.
Utah Jazz players Donovan Mitchell and Ruby Gobert announced on Thursday that they both tested positive for coronavirus. The news comes one day after the NBA announced it will suspend the 2020 season "until further notice."
On Wednesday night, the league said a positive coronavirus test result came just before tipoff at a Utah Jazz game against the Oklahoma City Thunder at Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City.
On Thursday, the Utah Jazz said in a statement that a second player tested positive. While neither the league nor the Jazz have named either player, Mitchell and Gobert announced on both of their Instagrams that they tested positive.
Gobert apologized for being “careless” by touching all the microphones and reporters’ recording devices in a Monday press conference, before he knew he had tested positive.
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I want to thank everyone for the outpouring of concern and support over the last 24 hours. I have gone through so many emotions since learning of my diagnosis…mostly fear, anxiety, and embarrassment. The first and most important thing is I would like to publicly apologize to the people that I may have endangered. 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 way to educate others and prevent the spread of this virus . I am under great care and will fully recover. Thank you again for all your support. I encourage everyone to take all of the steps to stay safe and healthy. Love.
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Thanks to everyone who has been reaching out since hearing the news about my positive test. We are all learning more about the seriousness of this situation and hopefully people can continue to educate themselves and realize that they need to behave responsibly both for their own health and for the well being of those around them. I appreciate the authorities in Oklahoma who were helpful with the testing process and everyone from the @utahjazz who have been so supportive. I am going to keep following the advice of our medical staff and hope that we can all come together and be there for each other and our neighbors who need our help❤️🕷
The league will suspend the game schedule until it "determines next steps for moving forward in regard to the coronavirus pandemic."
After the news about the NBA's season being suspended broke, Dallas Maverick's owner Mark Cuban announced he would look for ways to help arena employees who won't be able to work while the NBA is at a standstill. While details of Cuban's plan have not been made public, he said they "already started the process of having a program in place."
"We have to be smart in how we respond," Cuban said. "This is people's lives at stakes. This isn't about basketball; this isn't about the Mavericks. This isn't about when do we start, do we start? Or how do we start? This is a pandemic, a global pandemic where people's lives are at stake."
The league's suspension announcement came within moments of President Trump suspending all travel from Europe, aside from the UK, into the U.S., and actors Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson announcing they tested positive for coronavirus.