NBA COVID-19 update: coronavirus-sniffing dogs, postponed games, fines

NBA Commissioner Adam Silver
August 19, 2020: NBA Commissioner Adam Silver watches the Dallas Mavericks defeat the Los Angeles Clippers 127-114 at AdventHealth Arena

Even though the 2020-21 NBA season was expected to be pretty safe, the coronavirus pandemic is still a very big problem. While experts believe that it is unreal to reorganize every postponed game, NBA players get huge fines, and the League is going to use coronavirus-sniffing dogs to stop the virus. 

$50.000 fines can’t scare star players

The coronavirus pandemic is not over, and it means that the virus will change the NBA even more. The League’s decision not to hold the 2020-21 season in a bubble environment was a big surprise for many NBA fans and experts. And with the number of infected players constantly growing, the League is forced to find new ways to protect athletes.

The most unusual virus detection system was presented by the Miami Heat, who used special coronavirus-sniffing dogs to test fans before their match against the Los Angeles Clippers. 

The coronavirus disease and other viral diseases leave Volatile Organic Compounds in human bodies, and these dogs are able to detect VOCs without any difficulties. This method was developed by European, American, and Australian scientists, who believe that trained dogs can scan people for the coronavirus disease quicker and easier than special mechanisms. According to Michael Larkin from the Global K9 Protection Group, using coronavirus-sniffing dogs is the best way to find infected people: 

“They can spot it (COVID-19) within seconds. Dogs are the most efficient mobile detection system. They are living, breathing animals that have these incredible olfactory senses that are used across the world in a variety of environments.”

While for these trained dogs spotting infected people is just a game and an easy way to get a treat, they can protect sporting events from the COVID-19 pandemic and save a lot of lives. 

The NBA tries to protect its players and employees in different ways. There are very strict health and safety protocols that control and isolate the League’s athletes and staff. These rules were created to prevent the spread of the virus, and NBA Commissioner Adam Silver believes that new health and safety protocols can protect the League. The main problem is that NBA players sometimes violate the rules and endanger their teammates and all other athletes. James Harden and Kyrie Irving, who are considered the most scandalous players of the 2020-21 NBA season, were both spotted in public places without masks. Both superstar players were fined $50.000 for violating the NBA’s health and safety protocols. Kyrie Irving was also fined $816 thousand for missing two games due to his 5-day quarantine. Since these fines are not big enough to scare star players who earn millions every month, Adam Silver and his team are going to change the NBA’s health and safety protocols to make them even better. 

While the NBA is trying to protect its players, experts are worried that there are too many postponed games. Since it is almost impossible to reschedule them, there is a chance that the 2020-21 NBA season will be continued in a bubble environment.

All in all, the coronavirus pandemic is a problem that needs to be solved as soon as possible.

Many teams try to perform without their best players because of the pandemic and begin losing game after game. But improved health and safety protocols and coronavirus-sniffing dogs show that Adam Silver, his employees, and NBA teams are working to protect every NBA player.