OKC Thunder: Two players test positive for COVID-19
Two Thunder players have tested positive for COVID-19, coach Mark Daigneault said Sunday.
The players' names were not disclosed, per NBA guidelines.
Sunday was the Thunder's first day of team practice. Training camp opened Tuesday, but only individual workouts had been allowed for the first five days.
Sunday was also the first time a full group, or at least close to full, had been in the Thunder’s practice facility since March.
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“I think there was a lot of gratitude in the gym today,” Daigneault said. “We were all excited to be back at it.”
Daigneault said the Thunder fluctuated between 11 and 15 available players at practice.
The news of positive COVID-19 tests comes less than a week before the Thunder is set to play its first preseason game, Saturday at the Spurs.
Players can return to the practice facility as soon as 10 days after the date of their first positive test if they've gone at least 24 hours without a fever and if all of their symptoms have improved, per NBA protocols.
For the next two days upon returning, a player who tested positive can only participate in individual workouts. The player must also complete cardiac screening.
The NBA announced Wednesday that 48 of 546 players (8.8%) had tested positive for the coronavirus between Nov. 24-30, when the NBA returned to its league-wide testing program.
The Portland Trail Blazers closed their practice facility Sunday for deep cleaning after three positive COVID-19 tests within the organization in four days.
"I'm sure there will be positive tests throughout the season," Thunder center Mike Muscala said Sunday. "And logistically it'll be quite different than a normal season. But that's how things are now. We're in the midst of a pandemic.
“Just feeling grateful to play the game that we love and have an environment with the testing and everything being done where it feels safe.”