“I recently tested positive for the COVID virus and am currently in quarantine,” Brogdon said in a statement. “I’m doing well, feeling well and progressing well. I plan to join my teammates in Orlando for the resumption of the NBA season and playoffs.”
The NBA entered Phase 2 of its comprehensive reopening plan Tuesday, with players reporting to their teams in their respective home markets to undergo mandatory coronavirus testing. Nikola Jokic, the Denver Nuggets’ all-star center, tested positive for the coronavirus, while the Arizona Republic reported Tuesday that two unidentified members of the Phoenix Suns also tested positive.
In the weeks after the league’s shut down, the Los Angeles Lakers, Boston Celtics, Brooklyn Nets, Detroit Pistons and Utah Jazz announced that members of their teams had tested positive. The Nuggets and Suns did not confirm the positive test results, citing “medical privacy.” It remains unclear whether the NBA or its teams will formally announce future positive tests unless a player like Brogdon comes forward.
Various NBA team executives expect additional players to test positive this week, and the league’s return timeline was structured to accommodate that possibility. Teams are scheduled to begin traveling to Disney World on July 7, giving players who test positive this week sufficient time to self-isolate and pass multiple coronavirus tests and cardiac screenings before proceeding to the Orlando area with their teams.
Brogdon is averaging a career-high 16.3 points, 4.7 rebounds and 7.1 assists per game in his first season with the Pacers after signing a four-year, $85 million contract last summer. His steady hand was key in leading Indiana to a 39-26 record and the East’s No. 5 seed during a season in which all-star guard Victor Oladipo missed all but 13 games while recovering from a leg injury. If both Brogdon and Oladipo turn up in Orlando healthy, the Pacers could claim their first postseason series victory since 2014.
Last month, Brogdon and Boston Celtics guard Jaylen Brown, both Georgia natives, led a protest march through Atlanta in response to George Floyd’s death in police custody.
“I have brothers, sisters and friends who are in the streets,” Brogdon, who on Tuesday was reportedly part of a group of players to meet with the league to discuss tactics to address systemic racism up the resumption of the season, told the crowd. “Who are getting pulled over, discrimination, day after day. The same bulls--t. This is systematic. We don’t have to burn down our homes. We built this city. This is the most proudly black city in the world. Let’s take some pride in that. Let’s focus our energy. This is a moment. We have leverage right now. I have a grandfather who marched next to Dr. King in the ’60s. He would be proud to see us all here.”
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