Some (more) bad news broke on Wednesday, June 24, as former Virginia Basketball star Malcolm Brogdon tested positive for the coronavirus (COVID-19). The IndyStar had the story first, tweeting the report and citing an anonymous NBA source for the information.
Brogdon joined the Indiana Pacers in 2019 after spending his first three seasons in the NBA with the Milwaukee Bucks. He has only played 48 games for the Pacers, and hadn’t played in the 2020 season as a result of leg and hip injuries.
According to the IndyStar, the Pacers began the testing of players on Tuesday (June 23) in advance of their trip to Orlando, FL for the resumption of the NBA season. The season is set to resume on July 30, with 22 teams in attendance. As it stands now, the NBA plans to have all games and house all athletes at the Walt Disney World Resort.
Brogdon released a statement about his positive test shortly after the news broke:
It’s unclear when he tested positive or when he started quarantine, but it’s encouraging that Brogdon hopes to join the Pacers in Orlando when the season resumes next month.
Brogdon, the 2017 NBA Rookie of the Year, has been extremely active in the ongoing protests over police brutality and systemic racism that have swept the nation following the high-profile deaths of Black Americans Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, and George Floyd.
On May 1, Brogdon joined Boston Celtic Jaylen Brown and former UVA player Justin Anderson in Atlanta for a peaceful protest. Video circulated that showed Brogdon addressing the crowd and speaking about how his grandfather marched alongside Martin Luther King Jr. in the 1960s. Although unmasked in that video, Brogdon and those he protested alongside appeared to follow most recommendations regarding face covers.
Dubbed “The President” by his teammates at Virginia, Brogdon is well known and respected within the league for his activism and dedication to doing what’s right.
The NBA season was halted and eventually suspended indefinitely on March 11 when Rudy Gobert of the Utah Jazz tested positive for the coronavirus. College athletics and pro sports followed suit shortly after.
The MLB, MLS, NWSL, WNBA, and NHL are all joining the NBA in coming back in some form-or-fashion in the next few weeks.