Los Angeles Lakers’ Dwight Howard questions need for bubble masks


Days after receiving a warning not to wear a face mask in the common areas of the NBA campus, Los Angeles Lakers center Dwight Howard continued to question the need for a face mask. inside the so-called “bubble” of the league in Orlando, Florida.“They disinfect everything,” Howard said in a live Instagram video he posted on Sunday. “We are tested every day. So, it’s not like we’re with someone who can give it to us because we’re all tested together. And so, we are only with each other. We are only around everyone in the bubble. We don’t see any strangers, we don’t have any contact with strangers.

“So I’m just… I understand all ‘wearing a mask’ and all that, so no one is trying to do anything out of order. But, you know, again, I understand that there always has to be some sort of controversy out there. And I am not in any controversy. Do you know what I’m saying? I understand. It’s a bait. ”

Howard’s faith in the running of the league has been justified, so far. The NBA and the National Basketball Players Association jointly announced Monday that of the 346 players tested in Orlando for COVID-19 since July 13, none have returned confirmed positive tests.

In the nearly hour-long video, Howard repeatedly brought up the subject of masks, responding to comments subscribers posted on his livestream.

“I have a mask,” said Howard, whose face was uncovered while broadcasting from a laundry room. “I have extra masks here to make sure now. Look, now: masks over masks. NBA masks. ”

The eight-time All-Star held a handful of masks for the camera.

“Who wants an NBA mask? We’re about to sell them on eBay, ”he laughs. “Well, not eBay… Amazon. Amazon NBA. We will sell them. ”

“They tried to make all the difference in what I said about wearing the mask,” he said at another point. “And I understand. Common sense is not common. But I understand why some people say certain things. ”

Later in the video, he explained how the virus – which has caused more than 140,000 deaths in the United States – is spreading.

“I had no idea the coronavirus was flying through the air looking for people,” Howard said. “Let me stop because I don’t want people to think it’s okay. This is very serious, all of you. But these are jokes. And I guess we’re not supposed to be kidding. But with all that is going on. , we need positivity, man. We need jokes. We need people to laugh and smile. ”

At one point in the video, Howard left the laundry room to come out, where he spoke to several unidentified staff members off camera. When a member of staff misunderstood how long their laundry load was left before the wash cycle was finished, they jokingly blamed it on his mask.

“You may need to have their ears checked,” Howard said, folding one of his ears between his fingers. “This mask. The small part on the mask, which brings your ear down. ”

When one of the staff invited Howard to join a poolside rally, Howard changed the pitch of his voice to a bossy tone when he answered.

“We have come to social distancing,” he said. “Make sure you are six feet tall [away]. Six feet now. Where is your mask? Thank you. Thank you! ”

Later, when a follower asked him if players would be allowed to visit Disney theme parks, he again used the question as fodder for the mask material.

“I don’t know if we’re going to be wearing masks on the rides,” Howard said. “We’re going to be like, ‘Ahhhhh!’ The masks will fall. ”

Howard also responded to a question about vaccinations during the Instagram session.

“Do I believe in vaccinations? Howard said. ” No I do not know. This is my personal opinion, but no, I don’t. ”

Lakers coach Frank Vogel said Howard, who joined the team in Orlando – skipping the Lakers’ previous training camp in El Segundo, Calif., Which included individual training and training sessions coronavirus information – was aware of the same information as the rest of the team.

“He was one of those programs on Zoom,” Vogel said Monday. “And everyone has to make personal choices with that. Around the world, everyone makes personal choices. For us, we want to make sure we follow the NBA protocols they set for us to help us stay as safe as possible. There is not a 100%, risk-free environment inside the bubble, and we just want to be as diligent as possible in following these protocols. ”

According to the NBA’s health and safety protocol, the league has the right to apply disciplinary action – from a warning to a fine, suspension or even removal from campus – if a player does not follow guidelines for the restart of the season in Orlando.


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