The NBA on Monday sent teams two memos, and one detailed in great depth the safety and health requirements that must be in place for teams to open their practice facilities.
The 14-page memo is extensive and thorough and highlights the extreme measures teams need to take to protect players and staffers. The NBA is targeting May 8 to re-open practice facilities for workouts, but that date could change “if developments warrant.”
Here are some of the rigorous requirements the NBA has mandated:
- No more than four players are allowed at the facility at a time.
- Workouts are voluntary.
- One staffer may be in attendance, but that staffer cannot be the head coach or first-row assistant coach or member of the front office.
- People must be at least 12 feet apart at all times.
- Teams must use the one player, one basket rule; i.e., two players cannot shoot at the same basket.
- The NBA wants teams to stagger workout sessions to reduce interactions among players.
- Each team must name a senior executive as the facility hygiene officer to ensure requirements are instituted and followed, and each team must provide that person’s name to the NBA.
- No use of hot tubs, cold tubs, saunas or oxygen or cryotherapy chambers.
- All equipment must be thoroughly disinfected. Spalding has provided instructions detailing how to clean and disinfect basketballs properly. The NBA has also recommended a specific hardwood floor cleaner for courts.
- Temperatures must be taken for anyone entering the facility; monitor everyone for any COVID-19 symptoms and require players and staffers to report symptoms for themselves, household members or close contacts.
- Only single-use food (nutrition bars) and beverages (bottled hydration drinks) can be provided by the team for consumption at the facility.
- Follow Centers for Disease Control and Prevention protocols for cleaning and disinfecting facilities.
- Review and update the HVAC system and consider using an environmental health consultant to evaluate the facility.
- Have a designated COVID-19 testing area.
- Conduct at one least one remote meeting for players and staffers so they understand the requirements and recommendations for the facility.
- Provide the league with names of players and staffers who used the facility during the week, along with dates of their workouts.