NBA: Lakers' James to face no action over COVID-19 protocol violation


Posted at May 25 2021 12:16 PM

NBA: Lakers' James to face no action over COVID-19 protocol violation 1
Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James reacts as he walks off the court in the closing seconds of the game against the Phoenix Suns in the first round of the 2021 NBA Playoffs at Phoenix Suns Arena. Mark J. Rebilas, USA TODAY Sports/Reuters

Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James will not face punishment for violating National Basketball Association (NBA) health and safety protocols by attending a promotional event, with the league saying he posed no risk of spreading COVID-19.

U.S. media reported last week that James attended an outdoor photoshoot for his tequila brand with several celebrities before the Lakers' 103-100 win over the Golden State Warriors.

James, who was photographed without a mask at the event, also played in Sunday's 99-90 loss to the Phoenix Suns in the opening game of their first-round playoff series.

"To clarify any remaining misconception, LeBron James briefly attended an outdoor event last week where participants were required to be vaccinated or return a negative test result," the NBA said in a statement.

"Under these circumstances and in consultation with medical experts, it was determined that his attendance did not create risks related to the spread of COVID-19 and therefore no quarantine was necessary.

"Over the course of this season, there have been numerous similar violations of the league's health and safety protocols, which were addressed with the player's team in a similar fashion."

Under NBA rules, vaccinated players can engage in outside activities including their individual commercial arrangements.

James has not previously stated if he has been vaccinated despite being asked by reporters on multiple occasions, saying it was a personal matter.

(Reporting by Shrivathsa Sridhar in Bengaluru; Editing by Peter Rutherford )


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