Friday was the second anniversary of the NBA’s closure and other sports followed suit due to the World Health Organization declaring Covid-19 a pandemic.
It was also the first full working day where one could return to normal in baseball after a lengthy lockout imposed by owners on December 2, which resulted in the season being threatened and ultimately delayed by a week.
It was also a day of important announcement for any team that went on tour to play the Toronto Blue Jays, which could have consequences for the playoffs and financial consequences for certain players. As the Canadian government requires a person to have received another dose of vaccine or one dose of Johnson & Johnson at least 14 days before entry.
For players affected by the rule, it means they will go on the restricted list, be unpaid and not assemble any service team. This means that all unvaccinated players on AL East teams can lose nine or 10 days.
“It’s a concern,” MLBPA chief Tony Clark said Friday. “I think, as everyone knows – I appreciate and respect the decisions that are made, especially with regard to the health of the players and the health of society. But it is a problem, as a problem in the pandemic itself, that we navigate domestically as we become have to keep trying to work through this in the future. “
That could also be a concern for the Yankees. Although it is unknown which players are unvaccinated, it is known that some are not.
It became clear on July 15 when the Yankees saw a game postponed with the Red Sox postponed after positive COVID-19 tests for vaccinated pitchers Jonathan Loaisiga, Nestor Cortes Jr. and Wandy Peralta. At the time, Cashman was grateful for the vaccines, but also noted that there were some who were not.
On Sunday, the issue was discussed as the Yankees began meeting again for the first day of spring training, and manager Aaron Boone had some concerns.
“It will be interesting, to say the least, how that situation develops,” Boone told reporters in Tampa. “I think we still have a couple of guys at least who have not been vaccinated, so we’ll monitor that situation closely and see how it plays out. But yeah, that’s a concern.”
It will be even more worrying when May 2 rolls around and it is revealed which player or players are placed on the restricted list.
Boone’s concerns were not the only time the vaccine issue involved a New York team on Sunday. A few hours after Boone spoke, the ongoing saga about Kyrie Irving, who was not eligible for Brooklyn Net’s home games due to his vaccination status, continued.
The saga took a new turn over the weekend as the rules were loosened up a bit to allow him to enter the Barclays Center as a spectator but not work in the building as a point guard for a team trying to avoid a play-in. battle in the crowded Eastern Conference.
Irving showed up to watch Duke lose to Virginia Tech in the ACC title fight Saturday night, and then with about four minutes left in the second quarter and in the middle of Kevin Durant’s dynamic 53-point show against the Knicks, he strolled into the seats in the courts. opposite Brooklyn’s bench.
Before this week, everyone who walked into the Barclays Center had to show proof of vaccination via a vaccine card or a photo of it on the phone. That mandate was lifted by New York City Mayor Eric Adams, but despite the change, the mandate remains in place for those working in the building other than visiting players, a fact that frustrates the Nets and seemed to be one of the reasons to James Harden playing his deal with the Philadelphia 76ers.
The frustration came hours after Boone expressed his concern when Durant criticized the policy after the most productive of his 76 regular season games in Brooklyn was highlighted by his tiebreaking 3-pointer over RJ Barrett at the last minute.
“It’s ridiculous,” Durant said. “I do not understand it at all. I do not understand it. It just feels as if, at this point now, someone is trying to make a statement or point to their authority. Everyone out here is looking for attention. That’s what I feel the mayor wants right now, a little attention. He’ll find out soon. He better.
“It made no sense. There are already uneducated people in this building. We have a guy who can get into the building. Are they afraid of our safety? I do not understand. We are all confused. Pretty much everyone in the world is confused on this time.Early on the season, people did not understand what was going on, but now it just looks silly.Hopefully you should find out, Eric.
Sunday was a pleasant day for the Yankees and Nets.
The Yankees enjoyed the first day of a delayed spring training session, while the Nets enjoyed witnessing Durant’s amazing game over the Nets. Then came the sensitive topic of vaccinations on the second anniversary of the world starting to shut down, and it grew into concerns that could affect baseball and NBA playoffs.