— Ahmed🇸🇴/Justice for Breonna & Elijah (@big_business_) July 24, 2020
Internet sleuths on Reddit tracked the image down to a strip club in Atlanta. Not exactly the best way to avoid getting the coronavirus, mask or no. Now Lou Williams is now under investigation by the NBA for his activities outside the NBA’s Orlando campus, with the findings possibly impacting how long Williams is in quarantine. Shams Charania of The Athletic broke the story.
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) July 25, 2020
Williams owned up to being in the club to NBA investigators, reports Ramona Shelburne of ESPN.
Sources told ESPN that Williams has been interviewed by NBA security about his whereabouts while he was away from campus, and told them he did go to the Magic City gentleman’s club for a short time on Thursday night
— Ramona Shelburne (@ramonashelburne) July 25, 2020
Williams had been given permission to leave the NBA’s restart bubble in Orlando for personal reasons, and he posted on Instagram about attending a memorial service for a family member.
It’s what else did Lou Williams do while outside the NBA campus that has him under investigation. Williams told investigators he went to the club to pick up dinner after the viewing, Shelburne reported.
“He’s back [in Orlando], I can tell you that,” Clippers’ coach Doc Rivers said before his team’s scrimmage against the Wizards Saturday. “Those [pictures] obviously got out and it’s something we didn’t enjoy seeing.”
They will enjoy it less if Williams now has to stay in quarantine for a couple of weeks.
If a player leaves the bubble for an approved personal reason — the birth of a child, sick family member, and attending a memorial service qualifies — and has a negative coronavirus test every day he is outside the bubble, the player is quarantined in his hotel room for four days upon his return. That’s where Zion Williamson is right now. Williams reportedly was tested and was negative while outside the Orlando campus.
However, leave without permission or do things outside the stated purpose of the trip — visiting a gentlemen’s club, for example — and players can be quarantined for 10 days. In Williams’ case, that would have him back after missing two seeding games (he could practice at that point but might miss more games to get his conditioning up). If out for 10 days, it would cost him $150,000 in salary, according to Bobby Marks of ESPN. That length of quarantine is the reason the Lakers’ Alex Caruso said he did not attend his sister’s wedding in Texas recently.
Nothing is definitive, it is up to the NBA’s infectious disease specialist to make the call. But things do not look good for the Clippers Sixth Man.