NBA Memo Details Game-Day COVID-19 Trial Plan in All 28 Cities


As the NBA continues to deal with the reality of an effort to play the 2020-21 regular season amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the league has sent a memorandum to teams on Wednesday night to supplement the players and already the test Can be tried. Referees with local sports day trials in all 28 NBA cities.

The memo, a copy of which was obtained by ESPN, asks each team to spend the next two days trying to find local testing providers; The league plans to discuss those findings with teams over the weekend, with the goal of beginning to implement additional tests sometime next week. The intent is to find a local provider of polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests that can perform at least 40 trials – enough to handle players from both teams, as well as referees from that night – who collected on the morning of a game Can go and return at least one hour before tipoff.

PCR tests are more accurate than rapid tests but take longer to process.

While BioReference – which handles both daily tests the NBA is already using (PCR and a faster test) – will remain the league’s testing service, the purpose of finding local tests in every city is to ensure that, in the event there. There is an issue with the transportation of tests, with a backup option available to ensure that everyone is clear to participate in that night’s game.

Under the current system, for players or referees to participate in a game, they are required to have a negative PCR test the day before the game and a negative rapid test from the morning of the game. So, for example, players and referees participating in Thursday’s game between the Miami Heat and the Philadelphia 76ers would need a negative PCR test taken on Wednesday and a negative rapid test taken on Thursday morning.

The reason for the PCR test is from day one because those tests have a processing time of about 12 hours, so the results usually come in overnight. In cities where there is a bio-reference lab, however, those test results can be rapidly rotated.

Additional testing is being agreed on Tuesday in view of the NBA and the National Basketball Players Association to tighten the league’s health and safety protocols, including, among other things, closing rooms for non-team guests in hotels across the street. Is included. Using masks and limiting both team meeting time and player contact. All this is being done as the NBA tries to play its season during an epidemic that continues across the country and has been disrupting the league’s schedule for the past several days.

The NBA has now postponed nine matches this season, including eight this week alone. Three of them were scheduled for Wednesday: the Orlando Magic at the Boston Celtics; Utah Jazz at Washington Wizards; And the Atlanta Hawks in the Phoenix Suns.

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