NBA

Unvaccinated NBA players will be docked pay for missed games - Mike Bass

NBA spokesman Mike Bass has warned NBA players that they will be docked pay should they miss a game for failing to comply with local vaccine mandates.

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Unvaccinated NBA players will be docked pay for missed games - Mike Bass
ELSA AFP

Unvaccinated NBA players who cannot play in games due to a failure to comply with local COVID-19 vaccine mandates will not be paid for those missed games, NBA spokesman Mike Bass announced this Wednesday.

In New York City and San Francisco, unvaccinated individuals are not allowed to enter sports arenas, restaurants and other public spaces. So as the rules currently stand, unvaccinated NBA players will be unable to play in matches in those cities, which will lead to their pay being docked.

"Any player who elects not to comply with local vaccination mandates will not be paid for games that he misses," Bass said in a statement to the media on Wednesday, in response to query about what will happen to players who miss games due to the mandates in New York City and San Francisco.

Unvaccinated players from the Golden State Warriors, New York Knicks and Brooklyn Nets are the most directly impacted by those vaccine mandates and would face losing pay for every home game they missed. Meanwhile, unvaccinated players from traveling teams playing in New York or San Francisco would also be docked pay for games missed in those cities for failing to comply with local mandates.

Irving, Wiggins’ could lose $300k-plus per game

The announcement will likely draw backlash from anti-vax players in the NBA, where the topic of vaccines is as much a cause for division and heated debate as it is in society at large.

Several players remain unvaccinated, including Brookly Nets Star, Kyrie Irving, who faces losing more than $300,000 for every game he misses should the NBA enforce the announcement (per Marc Stein). This week Irving refused to talk about his decision not to get vaccinated, citing it as a personal decision.

Also with a salary surpassing $30m this season, the Golden State Warriors' Andrew Wiggins is another unvaccinated who would lose upwards of $300,000 per game missed. This week, the NBA turned down Wiggins' request for a vaccine exemption on religious grounds. In March, the Warriors forward said he would get vaccinated only if forced to do so.