December 5, 2021

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Fit And Go Forward

Full extent of Wizards’ coronavirus outbreak includes six positive tests

Wizards’ COVID-19 outbreak includes six positive tests originally appeared on NBC Sports Washington

Following the news the Wizards would have their third and fourth consecutive games postponed, general manager Tommy Sheppard and head coach Scott Brooks held an impromptu press conference on Friday afternoon to explain the full extent of their COVID-19 outbreak, which has been the most wide-reaching of any NBA team so far this season.

Sheppard says nine Wizards players are currently in the league’s health and safety protocol and six have tested positive for the coronavirus. Of the six, two have shown symptoms, while one is already feeling better.

No members of the Wizards’ staff – coaches of front office executives – have tested positive, but the outbreak has left them with only six healthy players, with both Russell Westbrook (quad) and Thomas Bryant (ACL) out due to injury.

“It’s a day-to-day thing as we get ready to see what’s next beyond Sunday and Monday,” Sheppard said, referring to the days of the team’s next originally scheduled games, which were postponed.

RELATED: Wizards-Cavs games postponed, as apparent outbreak continues for Wizards

The players who tested positive will have to quarantine for 10-to-14 days and test negative multiple times before they can return. The team is still in the process of figuring out the timeline for each player.

“We’re still getting our arms around when certain days count as that player starting protocol when they were officially ruled as tested positive,” Sheppard said.

The Wizards’ practice facility in Southeast Washington is currently shut down, but they hope to resume some basketball activities on Saturday, pending negative tests. They will begin with individual drills supervised by coaches.

In recent days, they have been limited to remote workouts via Zoom, which they have plenty of experience with dating back to the onset of the coronavirus pandemic in March. The players who tested positive are not allowed to participate.

Both Sheppard and Brooks didn’t express surprise at their situation. They felt there was a strong likelihood this would happen sooner or later as the United States continues to deal with the virus spreading at a record rate.

“It was inevitable. The NBA has pointed to this period for quite some time that this was going to be very difficult and they weren’t kidding,” Sheppard said.

The Wizards’ next scheduled game is on Wednesday at the Charlotte Hornets. Whether they can get this under control by then is unclear at this point.


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