Vogel on COVID protocol: Lakers putting “heavy emphasis on playing by the rules”

LAKE BUENA VISTA, FLORIDA – AUGUST 18: Head coach Frank Vogel of the Los Angeles Lakers watches from the bench during the first half in Game 1 of Round 1 of the NBA Playoffs at AdventHealth Arena at ESPN Wide World Of Sports Complex on August 18, 2020 in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Ashley Landis-Pool/Getty Images)

The NBA is set to resume play this Friday starting with some preseason matchups. It will be the first time teams play in their home arenas since the league was shut down last March. While the NBA’s bubble went pretty much without a hitch to finish out last season, there is clearly some concern about what results we will see outside of a bubble atmosphere. The league has given teams and players comprehensive protocol to minimize the risk and spread of COVID-19 as they prepare for a 72-game regular season.

So far into training camp, the Los Angeles Lakers have not reported any positive cases for the virus and things seem to be going well. Head coach Frank Vogel made it clear to reporters at media day that the team are putting a “heavy emphasis on playing by the rules” to keep everyone safe. Vogel also called this training camp “drastically different” from others due to the rules being handed down by the league office.

Many of the Lakers players, including Wesley Matthews, Montrezl Harrell, and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope echoed Vogel’s sentiments and put the focus on personal accountability by everyone to ensure that the team continues its clean streak.

So far in camp, the only missing players seen to be Quinn Cook (who was re-signed late and therefore has not met quarantine requirements yet) and Alfonzo McKinnie. It’s not clear what has kept McKinnie out of the practice facility at this time.

We can only hope that the Lakers due take all the requirements seriously and that we get through this season without anyone testing positive.

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