As the NBA moves closer towards its plans to return to play by the end of July, another serious concern from the side of the players has emerged.
The state of Florida has seen a massive surge in coronavirus cases with numerous record-setting days of new case reports since the state has completely reopened. This obviously brings some serious worries from the players as the NBA’s return is at Walt Disney World in Orlando.
The league has been adamant that the safety of its staff and players is of the utmost importance, but convening in the state of Florida, even in a protected capacity, would seem to be the opposite of that. The growing concerns forced the NBPA to take action and help to answer players’ questions.
With more questions and issues arising, the NBPA held a virtual town hall meeting with the players in order to address those concerns, via Baxter Holmes and Zach Lowe of ESPN:
The National Basketball Players Association held a virtual town hall with players this week and addressed concerns about the Florida cases, multiple sources familiar with the matter told ESPN. Players brought up the fact that Walt Disney World staffers who will not reside in the NBA campus — including hotel housekeepers — will not be subject to any coronavirus testing, sources said. One mitigating factor that was cited, a source added: Many of the new cases are in areas other than Orlando.
The players have some legitimate concerns and the question about the staffers is one that undoubtedly needed to be addressed. The fact of the matter is that everyone working within the NBA campus will not be staying there and will be allowed to go home, exposing them to the outside world in a state with a rapidly rising number of coronavirus cases.
The fact that those working won’t be subject to testing is undoubtedly cause for concern. Even if most of the new cases aren’t occurring in Orlando, it only takes one worker to be exposed who could then pass it on to any number of those within the campus.
Not to mention the fact that even though they may work in Orlando, these people could live in any number of surrounding areas.
The league and the NBPA has done well in consistently engaging with players throughout this entire process and answering any questions they may have. The question is whether they can do enough to ensure that the players will feel safe enough to come to Orlando and finish out this season.
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