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NBA Memo Reveals Testing Plan for Bubble, Concerns Exist

An ESPN report revealed a memo detailing the coronavirus testing plan for players and personnel inside the Orlando-based NBA bubble.

Symbol picture Basketball Photo by Harry Langer/DeFodi Images via Getty Images

The NBA’s coronavirus testing policy for the upcoming restart in Orlando has started to come into focus. According to a report from ESPN, players and team personnel will undergo routine testing before and after they enter the bubble.

The memo, which was obtained by ESPN, says players and “essential team staff” — any coaches, trainers or medical personnel who will be working with players directly, or will be part of the travel party to Orlando, Florida — will be administered both a COVID-19 test and an antibody test on June 23.

Each person will then be administered another COVID-19 test every other day, as well as the two days directly before the team leaves for Walt Disney World. All teams are currently scheduled to arrive at Walt Disney World between July 7 and July 9.

Regardless of the report presenting the appearance of safety from ESPN, a media outlet that is jointly owned by The Walt Disney Company, concerns over the potential exposure of support staff in Orlando popped up earlier in the week. NBC Sports NBA Insider Tom Haberstroh detailed the concerns tied the NBA’s return plan on Friday.

“This isn’t a bubble. This is a mesh hat,” says one high-level NBA executive who has been briefed on the NBA’s plans but isn’t authorized to speak publicly.

Disney workers have not been told to quarantine on campus, according to Eric Clinton, president of Disney’s labor union, United Here Local 362, which represents custodians and ride operators. Clinton told NBC Sports that it was “unlikely” that staffers would be subject to daily testing and quarantine measures like NBA players and team staffers.

Haberstroh’s report went on to explain that Disney workers will be required to wear masks and undergo regular temperature checks while on property.