NFL and NBA lead new Covid outbreak in sports

An NFL pre-season game between the Seattle Seahawks and Las Vegas Raiders at Allegiant Stadium on August 14, 2021 in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Ethan Miller | beautiful pictures

As Covid cases rise, professional sports leagues are once again feeling the impact, leading to postponements and star players missing matches.

More than 100 individuals in the National Football League, National Basketball Association and National Hockey League participated in health and safety procedures this week.

The NFL alone had more than 70 players test positive for Covid cases on Monday and Tuesday, and is on track to surpass the 72 positives the league reported on Dec. between 14 November and 27 November. Seven teams are now in enhanced mitigation protocols, which require more testing and stricter prevention rules. Additionally, an employee of the Washington Soccer Team has tested positive for the recently discovered omicron variant, which world health officials say is spreading faster than any other strain of Covid.

While leagues are unlikely to hit the panic button like in March 2020, when the NBA led the way in a complete suspension of sports games, the rise in omicron variation is causing concern.

This is the position of the leagues after the outbreak of Covid this week.

Freeport, NY: Close-up photo of a Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine booster shot being injected into the person’s arm as Mount Sinai South Nassau Vaxmobile finishes Freeport High School, in Freeport, New York on November 30, 2021 .

Steve Pfost | News | beautiful pictures

NFL Mandatory Enhanced Shooting

The NFL is tightening its Covid guidelines as it nears the end of the regular season and gearing up for the first playoffs next month ahead of Super Bowl LVI on February 13 in Los Angeles.

An NFL memo sent out on Monday and seen by CNBC said level 1 and tier 2 staff, including coaches and office staff, must receive booster shots by the end of the day. December 27.

At the same time, star players, including Rams recipient Odell Beckham, were put on the Covid list, putting teams through more intense protocols. Following positive trials, the Rams joined the Atlanta Falcons, Cleveland Browns, Minnesota Vikings and Washington Football Team in the league’s advanced protocols. These guidelines force all players to endure daily testing, holding virtual team meetings, and enforcing mask missions. According to league rules, individuals who test positive will be isolated, not allowed into team facilities and not allowed to come into direct contact with players or staff.

“We continue to have discussions with our medical professionals and the NFLPA,” NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy said in an email to CNBC Wednesday morning. “As we did last year, we remain adaptive and flexible and will be making changes based on the latest guidance to ensure the health and safety of everyone involved in the NFL.”

NFL impose penalties for outbreaks resulted in the cancellation or postponement of the game last July. It warned teams could be required to pay any shortfall in the away team’s game earnings or even lose games. Players will also miss game checks.

Despite the penalties, several NFL teams and players have caused a stir for violating NFL Covid policies this season.

In the first day of this month, The tournament is suspended The Tampa Bay Buccaneers widely received Antonio Brown and two other players for three games without pay for lying about their Covid-19 vaccination status. And last month, Green Bay Packers star Aaron Rodgers sorry for misleading the federation about his vaccination status.

Rodgers tested positive for Covid and was also fined $14,650 for attending a party while unvaccinated, and the Packers fined $300,000 for their violation.

The NFL is holding an owners’ meeting in Dallas this week, and league commissioner Roger Goodell is expected to address further on the league’s Covid outbreak Wednesday afternoon.

Miami Heat’s Bam Adebayo #13 greets Zach LaVine #8 of the Chicago Bulls after a game at the FTX Arena on December 11, 2021 in Miami, Florida.

Michael Reaves | Getty Images Sport | beautiful pictures

Covid can destroy the momentum of the NBA’s development

Meanwhile, NBA commissioner Adam Silver predicted more positive cases for the league when he spoke at a sports conference last October.

So far, he’s correct.

On Monday, the NBA postponed two games featuring the Chicago Bulls after the Covid-19 outbreak affected 10 players. The Bulls had a minimum eight-player requirement for the tournament, but after discussions with Chicago health officials, the NBA ultimately decided to reschedule the Bulls’ home game at United Center.

NBA protocol requires players to sit out for at least 10 days or give two negative tests in the 24 hours before returning.

Beyond the Bulls, Brooklyn The nets also have seven players, including All-Star James Harden, enter health and safety protocols. The Milwaukee Bucks may well be without their star Giannis Antetokounmpo due to Covid and the Los Angeles Lakers was cautious after a recent positive test.

The NBA records 97% of the league getting vaccinated, and behind the scenes, it’s estimated more than 60% have received the booster shot.

However, positive Covid cases could threaten the NBA at a critical time.

The league has highlighted viewership success this season ahead of its annual Christmas Day games next weekend. But those competitions could be a lot less appealing if star players were absent.

One of the Christmas games the NBA is banking on next Saturday is the Brooklyn Nets against the Los Angeles Lakers on Disney– has ABC. Cryptocurrency exchange is leaning on that contest as well, as it marks the official launch of a $700 million arena naming rights deal with the Lakers.

The league is contacting clubs to request available dates for further postponement planning, and there is speculation that the NBA may begin asking for evidence of enhanced hits among media members. have access to the players.

But there’s no sign that the NBA is ready to consider harsher measures, like suspending games and reducing poor ticket sales. That would eliminate proximity to players and staff, which could help reduce the risk of Covid transmission, but would affect attendance revenue and deal a blow to the tournament’s $10 billion figure. play this season.

“Like the rest of the country, and as predicted by our infectious disease experts, we’ve seen an increase in cases around the League,” an NBA spokesperson said. Mike Bass said in a statement to CNBC. “As we have done since the pandemic began in March 2020, we will continue to monitor the science and data and will work closely with the Players Association, updating our protocols. me when deemed appropriate by our medical professionals.”

The NBA can also get help from local governments. Many of the evidence required fans to present proof of vaccinations before entering the arenas. And local authorities could also put unvaccinated players on the line to get vaccinated or risk losing game checks.

Hockey was also affected. The NHL has postponed a game in Chicago after the Calgary Fire broke out Covid. The team is scheduled to play Blackhawks on Monday

This is the third time this season that the NHL has postponed a match due to Covid. New York Islanders contest in Philadelphia November 30th was also postponed after there was an outbreak on their roster. NFL and NBA lead new Covid outbreak in sports

Emma James

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