Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert, the first NBA player to test positive for coronavirus, apologized Thursday afternoon.
“The first and most important thing is I would like to publicly apologize to the people that I may have endangered,” he wrote on social media.
Gobert, 27, tested positive for coronavirus on Wednesday, just two days after he, upon leaving a press conference, made a point to touch all the microphones and recording devices on a table. His actions flouted the league’s newly instituted media guidelines that require reporters to be six to eight feet away from players and coaches as a precaution against coronavirus.
“At the time, I had no idea I was even infected,” Gobert wrote. “I was careless and make no excuse. I hope my story serves as a warning and causes everyone to take this seriously. I will do whatever I can to support using my experience as way to educate others and prevent the spread of this virus .”
Gobert played in Monday’s Jazz-Raptors game in Toronto but was ruled out of Wednesday’s Jazz-Thunder game in Oklahoma City with an illness.
Wednesday’s game was initially delayed because Gobert’s test results had come back positive moments before tip-off. The NBA ultimately decided to postpone the game and later suspended the season indefinitely.
Gobert, in his seventh NBA season, said he expects to make a full recovery.
“I want to thank everyone for the outpouring of concern and support over the last 24 hours,” he wrote. “I have gone through so many emotions since learning of my diagnosis…mostly fear, anxiety, and embarrassment.”
After Gobert tested positive, the Jazz tested all members of the team’s traveling party and confirmed another player, guard Donavan Mitchell, had tested positive.
“Thanks to everyone who has been reaching out since hearing the news about my positive test,” Mitchell wrote on Instagram Thursday. “We are all learning more about the seriousness of this situation and hopefully people can continue to educate themselves and realize that they need to behave responsibly both for their own health and for the well being of those around them.”
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Thanks to everyone who has been reaching out since hearing the news about my positive test. We are all learning more about the seriousness of this situation and hopefully people can continue to educate themselves and realize that they need to behave responsibly both for their own health and for the well being of those around them. I appreciate the authorities in Oklahoma who were helpful with the testing process and everyone from the @utahjazz who have been so supportive. I am going to keep following the advice of our medical staff and hope that we can all come together and be there for each other and our neighbors who need our help❤️🕷