12:26 AM ET
The NBA issued a memo Thursday night advising teams not to arrange coronavirus tests for asymptomatic players and staff, league sources told ESPN.
The memo states that, “for the time being, it is not appropriate in the current public health environment to regularly test all players and staff for the coronavirus.”
In the wake of the NBA’s season being suspended in March, some teams were criticized when they were able to arrange for testing of their entire teams at a time during the early days of the pandemic when tests were difficult to obtain.
Teams were instructed to make any decisions on testing any players or staff “in consultation with an infectious disease specialist, and in consideration of the patient’s individual circumstances and guidance on testing related to COVID-19 from the [Centers for Disease Control and Prevention] and from the local health authority in the team’s market.”
The memo also said the NBA is still looking at opportunities for leaguewide testing capabilities, and anticipates implementing one when team-organized activities resume.
This comes as the NBA, like so many businesses around the country, is trying to figure out how to navigate through the uncharted waters caused by the pandemic. ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported earlier Thursday night that the NBA expects it will need in the neighborhood of 15,000 tests to complete its season if it is able to resume play.
Meanwhile, teams will be able to begin having players work out at their facilities in very limited circumstances — with only four players being allowed in the building at one time, not working out together, and only in locales where shelter-in-place orders have been lifted — starting May 8 at the earliest.