Open Thread: Remembering the NBA and the COVID “bubble”

No one expected the life changing events of 2020 to shut down the world the way it did. In a moment, we were all home, working, teaching our children, masking up when we had to leave home, and awaiting a vaccine to the novel coronavirus.

On March 11, 2020, the NBA shut down upon receiving the news that Rudy Gobert had contracted the virus. With so many questions left unanswered, the sport went dark until a plan could be enacted to resume basketball while maintaining the health and safety of the players, coaches, officials, franchise personnel, and their families.

Episode 34 of the Spurs 50th anniversary docuseries The Ring of the Rowel reflects on how the San Antonio Spurs reacted to the pandemic and adjusted.

On July 31st, the NBA resumed with a plan bringing 22 teams into the “bubble,” an isolated set of hotels and courts allowing the sport to complete the season in an augmented form.

With no fans in person, and a wall of virtual fans (did anyone participate in that?), players were back to their roots, playing for one another while millions watched from home.

In particular, Keldon Johnson made himself known on a grand scale and preluded the player he has become.

Watch the video and take a trip back into how the world altered.

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