The Brooklyn Nets' Taurean Prince high-fiving coaches during a game against the Miami Heat. Photo: Sarah Stier/Getty Images
The NBA advised players in a Monday memo to use fist-bumps instead of high-fives when interacting with fans to decrease their chances of contracting the coronavirus, ESPN reports.
Why it matters: Many NBA front offices are worried that a severe outbreak in the U.S. could scuttle games and disrupt pre-draft combines and on-site workouts, limiting the league's recruitment efforts.
- It also advised that players limit signing autographs for fans to reduce potential exposure.
- The NBA told teams that it's consulting with the CDC and infectious-disease experts, including a researcher at Columbia University and will update them with the latest developments.
What they're saying: "The coronavirus remains a situation with the potential to change rapidly," the league told teams in the memo.
- The Portland Trail Blazers' CJ McCollum is heeding the league's advice, saying in a tweet that he is "taking a break from signing autographs until further notice" since a case of the virus was confirmed in Oregon.
- The Miami Heat's Jimmy Butler told ESPN that he wasn't worried or thinking about avoiding high-fives. "I don't think about any of that," Butler said. "I'm still going to be who I am. We're still going to be who we are."