Alton, Mo. – Right before the Utah Jazz took on the Oklahoma City Thunder on Wednesday, March 11, 2020, a player from the Jazz, Rudy Gobert, had a positive test of the coronavirus. The National Basketball Association canceled that game right away and also canceled the New Orleans Pelicans vs. the Sacramento Kings game because one of the officials was a referee at a Jazz game earlier that week. The other games for that night continued as planned, but the NBA postponed the rest of the season for a minimum amount of 30 days. Rudy Gobert was not at the game when he was tested for the coronavirus.
The postponement is set for a minimum amount of 30 days. The NBA won’t have any games until April 9-April 10, 2020. NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said Thursday, March 12, that the league might cancel the remainder of the season and playoffs. He also said that even if the suspension lasts one and a half months, the NBA could still have the finals in July. The commissioner also stated that the thirty-day postponement was just to guide people. The coronavirus changes things by the hour.
Other leagues are considering suspending the season as well or playing the games without fans in attendance.
The teams only had about twenty more games to play before the playoffs began. The playoffs were originally going to start in mid-April. “The NBA will use this hiatus to determine next steps for moving forward in regard to the coronavirus pandemic,” the NBA said in a statement.  The NBA regular season has eighty-two games; forty-one away and forty-one at home.
- ^David Close, Amanda Jackson and Jason Hanna. “NBA suspends season after Jazz center Rudy Gobert tests positive for coronavirus.” CNN, 13 Mar. 2020, . (go back↩)