The coronavirus continues to make its way through the NBA, with Boston Celtics guard Marcus Smart and two Los Angeles Lakers players testing positive for COVID-19.
Both teams released statements Thursday announcing the positive tests, though they did not identify the players by name.
“I’m OK, I feel fine. I don’t feel any of the symptoms,” Smart said in a video he posted on social media. “But I can’t stress enough practicing social distancing and really keeping yourself away from a large group of people and just really washing your hands and help protect yourself. And help protect others by protecting yourself.”
Smart was more emphatic in his tweet in addressing the issue of social distancing, writing, “The younger generation in our country must self distance. This is not a joke. Not doing so is selfish. Together we can beat this, but we must beat it together by being apart for a short while.”
Boston said in its statement that the Celtics player, later confirmed to be Smart, was tested because of “exposure to a known positive case.” The team said he was not exhibiting symptoms and has been in isolation for several days.
Smart, 26, said he was tested five days ago and got his results Thursday evening. Lakers players were tested Wednesday and received their results a day later. L.A. was prompted to have its players tested after four Brooklyn Nets players tested positive for COVID-19 on Tuesday.
The Lakers’ last game was against the Nets on March 10 at Staples Center. The NBA season was suspended indefinitely the following day.
Fourteen players out of the Lakers’ 17-man roster (including two-way contracts) were tested, league sources told ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne. Several players were granted permission earlier in the week to leave town, sources told ESPN.
“We learned today that two Lakers players have tested positive. Both players are currently asymptomatic, in quarantine and under the care of the team’s physician,” the Lakers said in a statement.