‘The reality is that basketball is really secondary’: The impact of the coronavirus on the NBA


WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – The NBA was the first professional sports league to suspend play on March 11th.

This came as the coronavirus hit them directly with a handful of players testing positive for COVID-19.

The league was in the home stretch of their regular season with teams jockeying for playoff positioning.

Johnny Kane reports for Fox Sports Detroit, covering the Pistons throughout the NBA season.

“We all knew about the coronavirus during our last trip, our last road trip to New York City to play the Knicks and then to Philadelphia after that,” said Kane.

Kane was in Philadelphia with the team when they took the floor for the last time this season against the 76ers.

“From the time the game ended and the post-game media availability came is when we found out that Rudy Gobert had tested positive,” said Kane. “We have played the Utah Jazz the day before we left for New York, but nobody had known anything about Rudy Gobert or Donovan Mitchell at that time.”

Three days later, it was announced that Pistons forward Christian Wood had also tested positive for the Coronavirus.

“I interviewed Christian that night after the game but we really didn’t have any direct physical contact after the game or anything like that, but, again we just wanted to act as though, let’s pretend that we all have it,” said Kane.

Kane, like many others, has taken to self quarantining at home.

As concern around the coronavirus continues, Kane says it has shown that basketball at this point in time comes second.

“It’s almost given everybody a great perspective of A, being able to work in and around a league like the NBA but then also understanding how much public health is at the forefront and that’s the most important thing,” said Kane.

Wood has since recovered from the coronavirus.

Kane says he hasn’t been able to reach out to him but says by all accounts that he is doing well.

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