Spencer Dinwiddie, the point guard who was the Brooklyn Nets’ leading scorer heading to the NBA’s restart in Orlando, said he has tested positive for the coronavirus and is experiencing COVID-19 symptoms that could keep him from joining his teammates at the restart.
Dinwiddie made the announcement through Shams Charania of The Athletic.
“Over the past few months, I have been diligent about protecting myself and others from COVID-19 by following all designated protocol and quarantining,” Dinwiddie told The Athletic. “I was ready and prepared to rejoin my teammates as we were to be an early entry team in the resumed season. I flew private to return to New York, passed multiple COVID-19 tests over my first several days in New York and was able to participate in a couple practices within the first week.
“Originally, we were supposed to be one of the teams to enter into the Orlando bubble early, but training camp got switched back to New York and unfortunately I am now positive. Given that I have experienced symptoms, including fever and chest tightness, it is unclear on whether or not I’ll be able to participate in Orlando.
“Hindsight is 20/20.”
Dinwiddie said he will self-quarantine for 14 days, then see how he is feeling and re-evaluate whether he should join his teammates in Orlando. Dinwiddie had been working out in preparation for the restart and had even planned out the social justice message he wanted on the back of his No. 26 jersey — a reference to the current national debt.
If you’re wondering what I’m gonna put on the back of my jersey it’ll be “Trillion”.
— Spencer Dinwiddie (@SDinwiddie_25) June 29, 2020
Dinwiddie had pushed Brooklyn back into the playoffs this season, averaging 20.6 points, 6.8 assists, and 3.5 rebounds a game. With Kyrie Irving missing much of the season (and Kevin Durant not playing at all), Dinwiddie had served as the team’s primary playmaker and an anchor of consistency as lineups kept changing due to injuries.
The Nets will be without Durant, Irving, Wilson Chandler (who bowed out over the weekend), and now possibly Dinwiddie. If Dinwiddie cannot play, it likely forces Garrett Temple into a much larger role, and leaves Tyler Johnson (just signed as a free agent) and Chris Chiozza as the other guys at the point.
Brooklyn is just half a game ahead of the largely-healthy Orlando Magic for the seven seed in the East. If the Magic pass the Nets, it puts Brooklyn at risk of Washington forcing play-in games after the eight “seeding games” and before the start of the playoffs.