The NBA announced the decision to suspend game play following the end of the games played on March 11, 2020. The suspension will last until further notice, with the NBA using what it describes (via Twitter) as a "hiatus" to decide on the next steps "in regard to the coronavirus pandemic."
The decision to suspend comes after a Utah Jazz player preliminarily tested positive. The player's positive test was confirmed ahead of the tipoff of the March 11 game between the Utah Jazz and the Oklahoma City Thunder, in the Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City. Although the player was reportedly not in the arena, the game was cancelled.
The NBA did not identify the player, but ESPN Senior NBA Insider Adrian Wojnarowsk reported on social media that Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert is the one who tested positive. The rest of the Jazz and Thunder teams are reportedly quarantined in the Chesapeake Energy Arena.
The NBA games scheduled for March 11 were the New York Knicks at the Atlanta Hawks, the Denver Nuggets at the Dallas Mavericks, the New Orleans Pelicans at the Sacramento Kings, the Detroit Pistons at the Philadelphia 76ers, and the Utah Jazz at the Oklahoma City Thunder. At the time of writing at 10 p.m. ET, Knicks vs. Hawks and Nuggets vs. Mavericks were still ongoing.
This is crazy. This can't be true. It's not within the realm of possibilities. It seemed more like out of a movie than reality.... It's really not about basketball or money. Literally if this thing is just exploding to the point where all of the sudden players and others have had it, you think about your family. You want to make sure you're doing this the right way. Now it's much more personal. You've seen what's happening in other countries, but just the whole idea that it's coming this close and potentially a couple players have it... Stunning isn't the right word. It's just crazy.
The suspension of the NBA season is only the latest development in the entertainment industry regarding coronavirus. Shortly before the NBA news, beloved actor Tom Hanks confirmed he and wife Rita both tested positive. More than one movie release has been pushed back, production on Disney+'s flagship live-action Marvel series was delayed, and reality series ranging from The Bachelorette to The Amazing Race to Survivor face challenges.
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