NBA teams who fail to obey the league protocols regarding coronavirus safety may face serious consequences, reports Tim Reynolds of AP. According to Reynolds, punishments for not following the rules could include surrendering draft picks or forfeiting games. A large portion of the rules regulate player and staff movement, both on the road and at home.
The league also said that it and the National Basketball Players Association will discuss players, coaches and other staff “being required to receive a coronavirus vaccine” when it becomes available, strongly urged teams to encourage players and personnel to get flu shots, and said that effective immediately Tier 1 and Tier 2 personnel — which basically means players, coaches and some essential staff — must avoid bars, lounges, clubs even if food is served, most live entertainment or gaming venues, public gyms, spas and pool areas.
Failure to adhere to the rules has severe repercussions.
As written in the new rules: “Protocol violations that result in COVID-19 spread that requires adjustments to the NBA game schedule or otherwise impacts any other team may subject the violating team to additional penalties, which may include fines, suspensions, adjustment or loss of draft choices, and/or game forfeiture.”
This gives the league wide latitude to address any rule-breaking, and it suggests that the league would look to make the punishment fit the crime.
You can read more about the rules here.