Rudy Gobert is considered patient zero in the NBA for COVID-19.
Utah’s All-Star center was the first player to test positive for the coronavirus (he very well may not have been the first to have it, and other players would have gotten it eventually elsewhere). When he tested positive back on March 11, the league shut down.
“The taste has returned, but the smell is still not 100%. I can smell the smells, but not from afar. I spoke to specialists, who told me that it could take up to a year.”
It could have been much worse. Fortunately, Gobert had a mild case of the disease and expects to be playing in Orlando when the NBA restarts next month. But the fact a healthy 28-year-old is still feeling the effects of the disease three months later speaks to how everyone — regardless of age — needs to take both the coronavirus and mask wearing seriously.
Utah’s Donovan Mitchell also tested positive for the disease and believes he got it from Gobert. That led to some friction between Utah’s two All-Stars — and trade speculation by fans of other teams — but the two have reportedly worked out their differences. Gobert is eligible for a contract extension this offseason and will be a free agent in 2021 without it.
Utah heads into the restart with their two stars but without Bojan Bogdanovic, which makes them far less of a threat in the stacked West.