SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4) – Vivint Arena recently announced that all fans hoping to catch a Utah Jazz home game will need to present either proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test to get in the building.
As for the players, no worries, they’re all vaccinated according to the Jazz’s general manager, Justin Zanik, who made the announcement at the team’s media day on Monday.
“We are 100% vaccinated,” Zanik stated. “We’re still in the middle of a pandemic, so we’re taking care of the things that we can control. There’s enough that we can’t control during an NBA season, so I’m happy to be able to say that.”
The Jazz were heavily linked to the start of the pandemic’s outbreak when center Rudy Gobert tested positive for the virus prior to the team’s road game against the Oklahoma City Thunder in March 2020. As a result of Gobert’s positive test – a positive test by guard Donovan Mitchell soon followed – the game on March 11 was postponed, with the bizarre event serving as a starting point for the U.S. response to the global health crisis.
Now, with the whole team vaccinated, Gobert and Mitchell included, the team is hoping it won’t have any more disruptions related to the disease.
Some NBA teams aren’t as fortunate to have their players all vaccinated and able to travel and play anywhere in the league. Golden State Warriors forward Andrew Wiggins has not received his shots and has declared his disinterest in obtaining a vaccine. As such, he is at risk of being ineligible for all Warriors home games due to restrictions in the San Francisco area. Brooklyn Nets guard Kyrie Irving, who has voiced vaccine hesitancy as well, would also miss his team’s home games in New York City due to a local vaccine mandate.
According to ESPN, roughly 90% of all NBA players have been vaccinated.
The Jazz will begin their regular season campaign on Oct. 20 at home against Oklahoma City.