COVID-19 Sports Update: Dr. Fauci Reportedly "Sees Promise" in MLB's Plan, NBA Seeking Rapid Testing

Social Navigation

COVID-19 Sports Update: Dr. Fauci Reportedly “Sees Promise” in MLB’s Plan, NBA Seeking Rapid Testing

Chicago Cubs

Although MLB went to extra lengths this morning to make sure folks understand that “the Arizona plan” is merely a contingency option under discussion – there have been no approvals sought or secured – it does have the flavor of something very much under serious consideration.

To that end, it’s important to understand the many, many logistical issues that would accompany playing games in Arizona under a quarantine as soon as May. I think Joel Sherman’s piece today did the best job of laying out those many challenging issues:

In the meantime, I thought this update from Dr. Anthony Fauci, one of the leading national voices on the current pandemic, was worth noting:

In other words, if Heyman’s report is accurate, Dr. Fauci *could see some version of the Arizona plan as plausible.* You have to take a dozen grains of salt with that one, though, because the whole thing remains entirely predicated on widespread availability of rapid testing for COVID-19, and outside of Jeff Passan’s report, I don’t know that I’ve seen optimism anywhere nationally that we’re going to be in that position by mid to late-May.

That said, an update on that front from the world of the NBA:

Once again, the NBA – like the other sports surely realize – knows that it cannot resume games unless it has easy access to near daily rapid testing of its players and key personnel. And it can’t get there until the testing is available, with relative ease and affordability, nationwide to everyone else who needs access. No sport is going to want to be seen as “line-jumping” in a case like this, no matter how important they might think their league to be.

So, while it’s good to know that rapid testing is on the radar of the NBA, we’re not necessarily closer to knowing just how realistic it is to HAVE that rapid testing soon. Again, with the Passan report – via MLB sources – as the exception, which suggested the testing could be widely available in May.

Speaking of May:

We’re in a bit of a holding pattern at the moment, though I expect the Arizona plan – and the NBA’s plans – will continue to be discussed heavily in the coming days.

In the meantime, all eyes are on peak cases in the United States coming and going, and then the widespread availability of rapid point-of-care testing devices.


Author: Brett Taylor

Brett Taylor is the Editor and Lead Cubs Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at @BleacherNation and @Brett_A_Taylor.