The NBA’s coronavirus count went up sharply on Tuesday as the Brooklyn Nets announced that four players had tested positive for the virus that’s currently spreading around the world as a pandemic. Rudy Gobert’s positive test for COVID-19, or coronavirus, shook the NBA world last Wednesday and forced the immediate suspension of the NBA season, sending a cascading effect through the rest of the sports world that saw the cancelation or postponement of every major event in North America.
The subsequent fallout of Gobert’s test was self-quarantine for a number of different teams, as well as the positive test of Utah Jazz teammate Donovan Mitchell. Other tests had come back negative for various teams — though Christian Wood of the Detroit Pistons was the NBA’s third coronavirus case — but the Nets announced on Tuesday that four unnamed players had tested positive for the virus.
Nets announce that four players have tested positive for COVID-19, with three asymptomatic and one experiencing symptoms. pic.twitter.com/S1E0QvTut9
— Sam Amick (@sam_amick) March 17, 2020
The Nets said the players were in the care of team physicians and are in isolation, and stated that one player had experienced symptoms while the other three were not. The latter of those diagnoses are often far more concerning, as healthy-feeling people are more likely to go about their normal routines and potentially infect others that may react worse to the virus. It’s important to note that NBA players are often getting priority access to coronavirus testing in many states, where not many people have met strict criteria for testing.
It’s good that the cases do not initially appear to be serious, but speak to the need for people to immediately social distance and attempt to flatten the curve as coronavirus spreads around the world. Not everyone can get tested at this point, and these asymptomatic positive tests in the NBA show just how far its reach spreads in otherwise healthy people and the ease with which it can permeate every area of society unless drastic measures are taken.