SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. (KRON) — NBA players who do not comply with local COVID-19 vaccination mandates won’t be paid for games they miss, NBA spokesperson Mike Bass said.
This will affect unvaccinated players on the Golden State Warriors, New York Knicks and Brooklyn Nets because San Francisco and New York City both require vaccinations to play.
Players on the Warriors, Knicks and Nets who are not vaccinated are not allowed to play in home games because the cities have passed laws requiring vaccination.
Warriors forward Andrew Wiggins is still not vaccinated, according to reports. Last week, the NBA officially denied Wiggins’ request to get a religious exemption for the vaccine.
If Wiggins holds his ground and remains unvaccinated, not only will he not get paid in Golden State’s 41 home games at Chase Center, but he also jeopardizes his availability with the Dubs.
The league released tentative health and safety protocols to teams on Tuesday, detailing rules for unvaccinated players.
Among the rules for unvaccinated players: They will not be able to eat in the same room with vaccinated teammates or staff, must have lockers as far away from vaccinated players as possible, and must stay masked and at least 6 feet away from all other attendees in any team meeting.
Further, unvaccinated players will be “required to remain at their residence when in their home market,” teams were told in the draft of the rules, a copy of which was obtained by The Associated Press. They will also need to stay on team hotel properties when on the road. In both cases, there are limited permissible exceptions — such as going to buy groceries, taking children to school and the like.
And unvaccinated players also will not be permitted to visit “higher-risk settings,” the NBA said, such as restaurants, bars, clubs, entertainment venues and large indoor gatherings.
The league is working with the National Basketball Players Association to finalize the protocols, but some details were agreed upon weeks ago — including provisions where unvaccinated players will be tested on all practice, travel, team activity and game days. Fully vaccinated players will not be subject to testing, with very limited exceptions.
At least 90% of players in the league are vaccinated.
“A vaccine mandate for NBA players would need an agreement with the Players Association,” NBA spokesman Mike Bass said. “The NBA has made these proposals but the players’ union has rejected any vaccination requirement.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.