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Data: Axios reporting; Chart: Axios Visuals

American sports leagues have become increasingly global over the last couple decades, which is inarguably a boon to business and fans alike.

Why it matters: The global nature of American professional sports represents our shrinking world, increased diversity and the melting pot of cultures that this country was built on, but right now, as with everything else, it's hard not to look at this through the lens of the coronavirus.

  • How many players in the three major leagues most impacted by this — the NBA, NHL and MLB — are stuck, thousands of miles from their families, wondering when they'll see them next?

Driving the news: The NBA and NBPA have issued a memo telling players that they are barred from traveling outside North America.

  • The NHL and MLB have not, to this point, enacted similar bans, as both leagues trailed the NBA in discovering players who'd tested positive.

The NBA (491 players) has the highest percentage of Americans, but also the greatest global reach, despite being the smallest of the three leagues:

  • U.S.: 363 players (73.9%)
  • Canada: 21 (4.3%)
  • France: 13 (2.6%)
  • Australia: 7 (1.4%)
  • Serbia, Germany, Croatia: 6 (1.2% each)
  • Turkey, Spain, Latvia: 4 (0.8% each)
  • Slovenia, Nigeria, Italy, Greece, Brazil: 3 (0.6% each)
  • 11 countries: 2 (0.4% each)
  • 20 countries: 1 (0.2% each)

MLB (1,192 players) just barely trails the NBA in terms of American representation:

  • U.S.: 822 players (69%)
  • Dominican Republic: 150 (12.6%)
  • Venezuela: 91 (7.6%)
  • Cuba: 28 (2.3%)
  • Puerto Rico: 23 (1.9%)
  • Mexico: 16 (1.3%)
  • Canada: 11 (0.9%)
  • Colombia: 9 (0.8%)
  • Japan, Panama: 8 (0.7% each)
  • Curaçao: 6 (0.5%)
  • South Korea: 4 (0.3%)
  • Four countries: 2 (0.2% each)
  • Eight countries: 1 (0.1% each)

The NHL (731 players), as you could have guessed, has by far the largest non-American contingent:

  • Canada: 305 players (42%)
  • U.S.: 201 (27.5%)
  • Sweden: 83 (11.4%)
  • Russia, Finland: 35 (4.8% each)
  • Czech Republic: 32 (4.4%)
  • Switzerland: 10 (1.4%)
  • Denmark: 8 (1.1%)
  • Germany: 6 (0.8%)
  • Latvia: 4 (0.5%)
  • France, Austria: 3 (0.4% each)
  • Six countries: 1 (0.1% each)

The bottom line: Maybe a couple hundred homesick athletes doesn't move the needle for you in the same way that a shortage of ventilators, tests and answers does, but while fans clamor for their favorite leagues to start back up again, it's important to remember what the athletes are going through, too.

Go deeper

Updated 12 mins ago - Politics & Policy

House passes George Floyd Justice in Policing Act

Photo: Stephen Maturen via Getty Images

The House voted 219-213 on Wednesday evening to pass a policing bill named for George Floyd, the Black man whose death in Minneapolis last year led to nationwide protests against police brutality and racial injustice.

Why it matters: The legislation overhauls qualified immunity for police officers, bans chokeholds at the federal level, prohibits no-knock warrants in federal drug cases and outlaws racial profiling.

Senate Republicans plan to exact pain before COVID relief vote

Sen. Ron Johnson. Photo: Stefani Reynolds/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Republicans are demanding a full, 600-page bill reading — and painful, multi-hour "vote-a-rama" — as Democrats forge ahead with their plan to pass President Biden's $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief package.

Why it matters: The procedural war is aimed at forcing Democrats to defend several parts the GOP considers unnecessary and partisan. While the process won't substantially impact the final version of the mammoth bill, it'll provide plenty of ammunition for future campaign messaging.

The new grifters: outrage profiteers

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

As Republicans lost the Senate and narrowly missed retaking the House, millions of dollars in grassroots donations were diverted to a handful of 2020 congressional campaigns challenging high-profile Democrats that, realistically, were never going to succeed.

Why it matters: Call it the outrage-industrial complex. Slick fundraising consultants market candidates contesting some of their party’s most reviled opponents. Well-meaning donors pour money into dead-end campaigns instead of competitive contests. The only winner is the consultants.

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