RICHMOND- The fear of the coronavirus potentially spreading throughout the United States has come to fruition.
The world of sports was once thought to be a cure to sadness. Now it has entered into an era of panic and scares.
Wednesday night’s NBA contest between the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Utah Jazz ended up being postponed as center Rudy Gobert of the Jazz became the first NBA player to contract the coronavirus.
NBA commissioner Adam Silver immediately announced that the remainder of the NBA season would be postponed indefinitely.
Multiple sports leagues across the world have either cancelled their season or not allowed fans into their events. The most recent event took place during some of the conference tournaments in college basketball.
Conferences such as the Atlantic 10, Big 10, and the Big 12 have barred fans from attending games. The Ivy League went as far as to cancel their tournament and send their regular season champion Yale to the dance instead. Other conferences like the Big Ten, AAC, A-10 and SEC tournaments have all had their tournaments canceled.
The NBA, MLS, MLB, and NHL had put security measures in place, banning media access in the locker room and restricting it to designated areas. The NFL has yet to release a statement regarding this matter.
NCAA President Mark Emmert released a statement saying that the NCAA men’s and women’s torunaments would be played without fans attendance and would be restricted to essential staff and “limited family attendance”.
“The NCAA continues to assess the impact of COVID-19 in consultation with public health officials and our COVID-19 advisory panel,” Emmert said in a statement. “While I understand how disappointing this is for all fans of our sports, my decision is based on the current understanding of how COVID-19 is progressing in the United States.”
College Basketball analyst Jeff Goodman tweeted about the possibility that this year’s March Madness tournament is possibly approaching the point of not occurring this year.
Yahoo Sports columnist Dan Wetzel also reports that members of the NCAA committee hope that the tournament does not get cancelled, although that looks to be inevitable.
Italy even pulled their athletes from playing in this years Olympics that are to be held in Greece.
Celebrity Tom Hanks and his wife were even exposed to the coronavirus while on a trip to Australia.
Colleges like VCU have closed and moved their classes online and cancelled their spring events until at least April. All overseas classes have been cancelled as well, and students are being asked to return home and stay home.
The virus first originated in China and began to spread throughout travel and flight costs have cheapened in addition to travel bans being enforced in countries such as India, who isn’t allowing people to travel there at least until April.
According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, China is one 114 countries that has had the virus spread. China currently has the most cases discovered at 80,955 cases and 3,162 deaths. Iran currently has 8,042 cases with 291 deaths reported.
Bloomberg.com states that the state of Washington currently has the most cases at 366 and 29 deaths. That makes up the majority of deaths in the United States which stands at 37. Washington was the first US state to have reported a case.
New York is the only state in America with over 200 cases to have not had a single death. 5 states have yet to contract the virus. 3 states have over 100 cases.
In a speech to the nation, President Trump issued a travel ban from Europe to the United States for the next 30 days.