Third Heat player tests COVID-19 positive, two won't leave with team to Disney

Ira Winderman, Sun Sentinel on

Published in Basketball

Make it three Miami Heat players who have now tested positive for coronavirus, with the latest two players to test positive not expected to travel with the team when the rest of the roster leaves Wednesday for the NBA's quarantine setting at Disney World.

The South Florida Sun Sentinel has confirmed through an NBA source that two most recent COVID-19 positive tests came from a testing round earlier this past week, before the Heat on Thursday shut down the practice court at AmericanAirlines Arena.

The most recent round of testing did not result in any other positive results. A member of the team's staff also had previously tested positive.

The Heat will continue to test players on an every-other-day basis at the arena before their Wednesday bus departure, but no longer will host what had been ongoing individual workout sessions.

The latest positive test results came in the wake of Heat forward Derrick Jones Jr. previously being identified by an NBA source as testing positive for COVID-19. The latest two players testing positive, both part of the team's primary rotation, have not been identified due to a privacy request.

Jones is expected to clear his quarantine and be part of the Heat's Wednesday traveling party.


The timing of the two most recent positive tests could keep those players from the Heat's group workouts at Disney, with the Heat scheduled to open a three-game exhibition schedule there on July 22 and then resume regular-season play on Aug. 1, before moving on to the playoffs.

At 41-24, the Heat already have clinched a playoff berth, with the postseason to begin in mid-August, after an eight-game schedule to complete the regular season.

According to the NBA's coronavirus guidelines, travel to Disney will only be allowed, "only for those who (i) have not returned a positive test for COVID-19 since June 23, (ii) have tested positive, but thereafter have been medically cleared to travel (based on lack of symptoms, at least two consecutive negative PCR tests, and clearance to discontinue isolation), (iii) report no symptoms on day of travel, and (iv) do not live with a household member who has or recently had COVID-19 or symptoms."

Although at the NBA roster limit of 17 players, the Heat would be able to replace a player who tests positive and either is unable to continue or elects to bypass the restart.


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