He Jokingly Touched Everything. Now, a Diagnosis

2 days after seeming to mock coronavirus, Utah Jazz's Rudy Gobert reportedly tests positive
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 12, 2020 6:36 AM CDT
Updated Mar 12, 2020 7:02 AM CDT

Within an hour Wednesday night, President Trump announced travel restrictions from Europe amid the coronavirus pandemic, Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson announced they'd contracted the contagious virus, and the NBA announced it was suspending its season because of it. Now, a video is circulating of the Utah Jazz player who apparently spurred the basketball shutdown—which could cost the NBA's teams hundreds of millions of dollars, depending on how long it lasts, per the AP. A source tells USA Today that player is center Rudy Gobert, and the video shows him on Monday at a post-practice press conference putting his hands all over the mics and reporters' recorders on the table in front of him before leaving the room in an apparent joke about the virus.

On Wednesday evening, right before the Jazz's game against the Oklahoma City Thunder, Gobert was reportedly found to be the first person in the NBA to test positive for the novel coronavirus, even though he was "feeling strong enough to play" Wednesday, per a writer for The Athletic. According to a tweet by an ESPN reporter cited by Slate, Gobert never showed up at Chesapeake Energy Arena, but he was in Oklahoma City ready to play if he was found not to have contracted the virus. The AP details everyone Gobert may have come into contact with in March, including 50 NBA opponents from five teams, more than a dozen refs, other Utah Jazz players, team coaches and staff, "and everyone he's been on a plane with in recent days. Or shared a hotel elevator with. Or dined with. Or shook hands with. And so on, and so on." (More coronavirus stories.)

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