The NBA and sports world came to a screeching halt on Wednesday night when the Thunder-Jazz game in Oklahoma City was suddenly postponed just prior to tip-off. It was shortly after that we learned Rudy Gobert had tested positive for COVID-19 and the Jazz team was quarantined inside their locker room getting tested — and that the five teams they played most recently were being asked to self-quarantine.
The result of Gobert’s positive test has been the eyes of sports leagues everywhere being pried open to the severity and danger of the situation at hand. The NBA suspended its season on Wednesday night and just about every other major sports league and college conference, from MLS to MLB to NHL, issued the same declaration of an indefinite suspension of games on Thursday. It was also on Thursday that we learned the results of the Jazz testing, where 57 of 58 people tested came back negative, but All-Star Donovan Mitchell was the lone other positive test.
Mitchell issued a response to his positive test on Instagram, in which he thanked the medical officials and noted he was following the advice of the Jazz medical staff and experts going forward, while noting he hopes this serves as an opportunity for people to “educate themselves” on the crisis at hand and take it seriously because of the danger to themselves and others.
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 question now is whether Utah’s opponents, now under self-quarantine, will be tested and if any will test positive. The hope is that, like the rest of us, this can get to a point where testing is available on a broader scale and we can better understand how prevalent the spread is in order to slow it. For now, all we and the league can do is practice social distancing and do our best to, as Mitchell says, behave responsibly for the health and well being of ourselves and society as a whole.