The gang is back together again … and standing six feet apart!
According to NBC Sports Chicago’s K.C. Johnson, the Chicago Bulls all met at the Advocate Center earlier today for a team meeting.
Per NBA directive, Bulls met at Advocate Center today for COVID-19 educational meeting and regulations moving forward. It was 1st team gathering since flight home from Orlando. And, yes, attendees were at least 6 feet apart: https://t.co/z6aTPV8NPF
— K.C. Johnson (@KCJHoop) March 16, 2020
Since landing in Chicago from Orlando on Thursday, the Bulls have gone their separate ways. With the league strongly encouraging self-isolation and social distancing, it was unclear when the squad would be back together again, but after a couple of days chillin’ at home and playing video games, a necessary meeting was called.
According to Johnson, the meeting itself was led by physicians and the players were informed of the proper protocol over the next several weeks (months?).
With the NBA indefinitely extending its ban on team practices in a memo circulated to teams Sunday night, players also were briefed on proper protocol for the unprecedented hiatus. Individual workouts are allowed with assigned coaches in a “one-basket-one coach” arrangement. Weightlifting exercises also are limited to one player at a time, with cleaning measures used immediately afterward.
Strict, but necessary. I was curious about how the league would handle player workouts. If the NBA is seriously considering a hiatus of up to three months, these players are going to have to stay in shape. While it might feel like a shortened offseason to some of us, these players will not get the benefit of a training camp or preseason games upon their return to shake off any rust. In fact, it’s quite possible the league jumps right into the playoffs, which could prove to be an incredibly difficult challenge for any player who hasn’t stuck with his normal in-season regimen.
I’m sure non-contact practices and workouts for the foreseeable future will take quite the getting used to, but again, it’s the necessary decision. Similarly, the NBA has recommended all organizations take the temperature of each person who enters their facilities.
Memo to teams this a.m. has instructions for taking temp of everyone entering team facilities (if teams wish):
* people waiting to have temp checked should remain 6+ feet apart
* any temp 100.4+ is considered fever
* Those with fever should leave facility pending further tests
— Zach Lowe (@ZachLowe_NBA) March 16, 2020
Players were also reminded that if they plan to leave the Chicagoland area during this time, they must keep the organization up to date.
Overall, I’m just incredibly interested to see how these players try to keep up their daily routine. Nothing about this situation makes it easy to work out and stay in game shape, which means we’ll either see the players get creative or we’ll see some rusty ballers on the court upon the league’s return. Perhaps this is a reason to finish the entirety of the season rather than skip to the playoffs. The final 20 or so games can be used to help players regain their footing and provide a smoother transition into postseason play.
Eh, whatever, only time will tell! For now, I’m sure the Bulls will head back home and binge some Netflix with the rest of us.