Coronavirus could further delay Durant’s return from injury

Good news. The four Brooklyn Nets players who had tested positive for the coronavirus (COVID-19) are now free from symptoms.

Nets general manager Sean Marks announced Wednesday during a conference call with reporters that all members of Brooklyn’s traveling party had completed a two-week quarantine. Even so, they will continue to abide by social-distancing guidelines.

“As it pertains to the team,” Marks said (via ESPN’s Malika Andrews), “I sense — like all of us, like the rest of New York and really the rest of the globe — we’re trying to deal with this as best we can.”

The Nets were scheduled to face the Warriors at Chase Center in front of no fans on March 12, but the NBA indefinitely suspended the season the previous night after two Utah Jazz players became the first in the NBA to test positive for the coronavirus. Upon returning to Brooklyn from San Francisco, the Nets paid a private company to test the team for COVID-19, which revealed that four players had tested positive.

Of those four players, three were asymptomatic. According to Marks, however, the lone player exhibiting symptoms has since recovered.

Former Warrior Kevin Durant admitted he was one of the four Nets to test positive for the coronavirus. He hadn’t played all season while recovering from a torn Achilles, and was already ruled out for the duration of the 2019-20 campaign. While Durant might have some extra time on his hands these days, it’s possible that the season being indefinitely paused could delay his return to game action.

The same goes for Brooklyn point guard Kyrie Irving, who underwent shoulder surgery on March 3. Though they are able to continue their respective rehabilitations, they obviously don’t have access to the practice facility, which could slow the process.

“I couldn’t give an answer on when they’ll play this season,” Marks said. “I don’t think it’s fair to those athletes nor the performance team to put a timeline on it. I think everyone is dealing with bigger, far more pressing things.”

[RELATED: Steph had to assemble hoop Ayesha ordered in quarantine]

Marks insisted he would have a better idea of each player’s respective timeline in another three weeks to a month, when he hopes to have more clarification about the NBA’s plans to resume the season.

Of course, there’s no guarantee that will happen, either.

Warriors players can’t go to Chase Center to work on their game while the NBA season is indefinitely suspended due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

They can’t use the team facilities to ride the bike, or hop on the treadmill or use the elliptical.

And not everybody has exercise equipment at home.

But those who do have been able to work out together

… virtually.

Ben Cohen of The Wall Street Journal has the details:

(Steph Curry) does have a Peloton bike at home. As it turns out, he’s not the only one: The Warriors have been going for a group ride in the morning.

The invitation goes out on a Slack group — Curry admits to skipping one class because he didn’t see the message — and then a maniacally competitive bicyclist named Draymond Green attempts to destroy everyone around him, according to a person familiar with the rides.

“In the Tour de Warriors,” Curry said, “I’m above average, but I’m not on the podium yet. I have to figure out how to get there. There’s always something to shoot for.”

It’s not a surprise to hear that Draymond is competitive during these sessions, as he has been a regular at SoulCycle for quite some time.

[RELATED: Steph had to assemble hoop Ayesha ordered in quarantine]

“You walk out feeling sweaty, feeling good like you got a workout in, but it doesn’t put much strain on the body,” the three-time NBA champion told NBC Sports Bay Area’s Kerith Burke about one year ago. “Sometimes it’s good to get away from the game of basketball or the typical weight room.

“You’re working out with a different group of people, you’re all on rhythm, trying to stay on the beat with each other. When you add music to a workout, it’s fun. I do it a lot with my fiancée, and we have a good time. We sit next to each other. She’s really good at it.”

As for Steph — knowing how competitive he is, don’t be surprised if we learn that he wins the “Tour de Warriors” on the regular very soon.

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The Warriors have not selected No. 1 overall in the NBA draft since 1995.

That year, they took big man Joe Smith out of Maryland.

What will they do if they win the NBA Draft Lottery this year?

Well, according to Connor Letourneau of the San Francisco Chronicle:

If the Warriors land the No. 1 pick in the draft, they’ll be open to trading it. But if Golden State doesn’t receive a worthy offer, it would likely take (Anthony) Edwards with the top selection, according to a league source.

Edwards — who officially declared for the draft last week — is considered the No. 1 prospect by ESPN and The Athletic.

The 6-foot-5 guard averaged 19.1 points, 5.2 rebounds, 2.8 assists and 1.3 steals as a freshman at Georgia. He shot 40 percent overall and 29.4 percent from deep (he went 3-for-25 his last three games).

Edwards — who does not turn 19 years old until August — was incredible in the second half of a game against Michigan State at the Maui Invitational in November, racking up 33 points and producing multiple highlight-reel plays.

ANTHONY EDWARDS IS A MONSTER!! pic.twitter.com/y3O5uOrPrZ

— Drew Shiller (@DrewShiller) November 26, 2019

STEPH + KLAY + ANTHONY EDWARDS = OH MY pic.twitter.com/WdlotMUoIo

— Drew Shiller (@DrewShiller) November 26, 2019

Now I know why future Warriors wing Anthony Edwards is projected as the No. 2 overall pick in the draft pic.twitter.com/6i77KndiW8

— Drew Shiller (@DrewShiller) November 26, 2019

Don’t worry Warriors fans — Golden State assistant GM Larry Harris is in Maui to see Anthony Edwards (the projected No. 2 overall pick) up close and personal pic.twitter.com/JkHf8fZ4as

— Drew Shiller (@DrewShiller) November 26, 2019

As NBC Sports Bay Area’s Monte Poole wrote in a recent profile:

The Warriors have the requisite patience and proper environment for someone like Edwards to prosper. They know coaching is a crucial factor in maximizing Edwards’ stratospheric potential, and they realize another key factor is environment. With a nine-man staff under Steve Kerr and a culture of winning, they rank high in both areas.

The primary factor is talent, and Edwards has plenty of that. There was some inconsistency, typical of a freshman but also a product of the junk defenses thrown his way on a mediocre team.

[RELATEDKerr discusses Warriors’ three options with high draft pick]

The lottery is scheduled for May 19, but it’s widely anticipated the whole NBA calendar will be pushed back as the world continues to deal with the coronavirus pandemic.

So you should expect to hear a bunch more draft rumors in the coming months.

Follow @DrewShiller on Twitter and Instagram

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