Although the number of infections and deaths is thankfully headed in the right direction, the COVID-19 pandemic is still ongoing in the United States and the NBA.
Because of that, COVID restrictions still exist.
NBA commissioner Adam Silver recently made comments suggesting he is changing his opinion on strict COVID regulations and mandates that impact the league.
NBA commissioner Adam Silver questions NYC's vaccine mandate for the league's players.
Silver says it's an "oddity" that it only applies to home players.
— The Athletic (@TheAthletic) February 16, 2022
Speaking with The Athletic, Silver spoke of New York City’s rule stating that athletes playing at home games must be vaccinated in order to perform:
“If ultimately that rule is about protecting people in the arena, it just doesn’t make sense to me that an away player who is unvaccinated can play in Barclays but the home player can’t.”
What does this mean for the future of the league?
The End Of Mandates
In September, the NBA said that it would honor the rules put in place by certain cities in regards to COVID vaccinations.
In New York, anyone over the age of 12 wasn’t allowed to enter “certain covered premises” such as Barclays Center, without providing proof of at least one dose of the COVID vaccine.
However, this rule only applied to players employed by the New York Knicks and Brooklyn Nets.
Silver is raising issues with that aspect of the rule, saying that it doesn’t really keep people safe is away players are able to come and go without being vaccinated.
This statement is the first suggesting that perhaps Silver thinks it’s time to revise or possibly lift the COVID vaccine regulations that the league has been adhering to for months.
If he decides to alter the NBA’s stance, it may just put pressure on New York City to update its rules as well.