Quietly and without much fanfare, the NBA has established the standard among North American leagues for avoiding costly and potentially dangerous COVID-19 outbreaks.
The NBA and National Basketball Players Association announced on Wednesday that zero new players tested positive for the coronavirus over the past week. One player tested positive across each of the previous three weeks, and the data suggests players and personnel are following health and safety protocols while at the same time embracing available COVID-19 vaccines.
The regular season remains scheduled to finish May 16.
Earlier in the day, five Houston Astros players went on the injured list due to MLB's health and safety protocols, but it's unknown if any of them tested positive for COVID-19. Meanwhile, the NHL's Vancouver Canucks haven't played since March 24 due to a coronavirus outbreak that included at least 25 people linked with the club testing positive for the virus. The NHL is hopeful Vancouver can resume its season this Friday.
The NBA sent teams and personnel to the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex bubble site for last summer's resumption amid the pandemic, but the current trends suggest players should be able to remain in home markets with their families for the upcoming postseason tournament unless things drastically change over the next month.