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Nets’ Spencer Dinwiddie tests positive for COVID-19, may sit out restart

Nets point guard Spencer Dinwiddie announced Monday he has tested positive for the coronavirus and is uncertain to join the team in Florida for next month’s restart of the NBA season.

Dinwiddie disclosed his diagnosis in an interview with The Athletic and added that he has experienced symptoms related to COVID-19. Per NBA medical protocols that have been established during the restart run-up, he will be put into quarantine for at least 10 days and must pass at least two retests before being permitted to rejoin his club.

“Originally, (the Nets) were supposed to be one of the teams to enter the Orlando bubble early, but training camp got switched back to New York and unfortunately I am now positive,” he said. “Given that I have experienced symptoms, including fever and chest tightness, it is unclear on whether or not I’ll be able to participate in Orlando.”

Dinwiddie had planned on playing when the Nets resume their season July 31 at the Walt Disney World Complex. He said he initially tested negative for the virus after returning to New York to take part in workouts.

“I was ready and prepared to rejoin my teammates as we were to be an early entry team in the resumed season,” Dinwiddie said. “I flew private to return to New York, passed multiple COVID-19 tests over my first several days in New York and was able to participate in a couple of practices within the first week.”

Prior to the season’s stoppage on March 11, Dinwiddie was averaging career highs of 20.6 points and 6.8 assists per game to help the Nets maintain a playoff spot in the Eastern Conference despite injuries to Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant. Brooklyn enters the restart seventh in the East and six games ahead of the ninth-place Wizards.

Neither Durant nor Irving are expected to return this season, and center DeAndre Jordan announced Monday on Twitter that he will sit out the restart after testing positive. ESPN reported Sunday that forward Wilson Chandler informed the Nets he will not take part in the restart because of health and family reasons.

It is unclear whether Dinwiddie is among the 16 unidentified players the NBA announced last week were positive for COVID-19 during preliminary testing for the season’s resumption. Other players who have either revealed they tested positive or reportedly done so include Nuggets All-Star Nikola Jokic, Pacers guard Malcolm Brogdon, Heat forward Derrick Jones Jr. and three Kings – Buddy Hield, Jabari Parker and Alex Len.

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Basketball

Lakers’ Avery Bradley to opt out of NBA restart over family concerns

Lakers guard Avery Bradley will not be part of the NBA’s restart at Walt Disney World outside Orlando, Fla., next month.

Bradley has a 6-year-old son who has a history of struggling to recover from respiratory illnesses and would have been unlikely to be medically cleared to enter the bubble at Disney World after the first round of the playoffs, when family members will be permitted to join players.

“As committed to my Lakers teammates and the organization as I am, I ultimately play basketball for my family,” Bradley told ESPN. “And so, at a time like this, I can’t imagine making any decision that might put my family’s health and well-being at even the slightest risk.

“As promised also, I will use this time away to focus on the formation of projects to help strengthen my communities.”

Bradley stands to lose a projected $650,000 in salary by sitting out the season’s resumption.

The Lakers enter the 22-team restart with the best record in the Western Conference. Bradley has been a key two-way player this season, averaging 8.6 points and 2.3 rebounds.

The 10-year veteran joins the Wizards’ Davis Bertans and the Trail Blazers’ Trevor Ariza as players who have already said they will not participate in the restart. Bertans and Ariza are on teams currently on the outside of the playoff picture.

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