MANILA, Philippines – Utah Jazz All-Star Donovan Mitchell is now the second NBA player to test positive for COVID-19, per a report by ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski on Thursday, March 12, Manila time.
This development comes just hours after Mitchell’s fellow All-Star teammate Rudy Gobert became the first NBA player to fall victim to the ongoing pandemic, prompting an immediate league-wide suspension effective Thursday morning. (READ: NBA to suspend season after Jazz player tests positive for coronavirus)
Wojnarowski also reported through his sources that Gobert had been “careless in the locker room touching other players and their belongings.”
While the tweet did not specify if Gobert interacted with his teammates pre- or post-COVID detection, the French big man was caught jokingly touching microphones and other reporters’ equipment during an earlier press conference.
Shams Charania of The Athletic added that only Mitchell tested positive out of 58 tests administered.
Apart from the Jazz, who boarded a plane that was also used by the Orlando Magic and Memphis Grizzlies, 5 other teams have also been ordered to self-quarantine after playing the Jazz in the last 10 days.
These are the Cleveland Cavaliers, Boston Celtics, New York Knicks, Detroit Pistons and the Toronto Raptors, all Eastern Conference teams who hosted the Western contender.
Along with the Jazz, the Oklahoma City Thunder are also quarantined inside the Chesapeake Energy Arena as of posting to prevent further potential spreading of the highly-contagious disease.
The two playoff contenders were just about to start their game on Thursday afternoon before the NBA called the game off and promptly sent the Thunder fans home.
Mitchell – who averages 24.2 points, 4.4 rebounds and 4.2 assists a game for the Jazz this season – introduced himself to Filipino fans last year after visiting the Philippines as a part of his rookie year sneaker promotion. – Rappler.com