In a long interview on Friday on Doug & Wolf, Suns general manager James Jones gave nothing but positive indications regarding the team’s health in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic sweeping the United States right now.
“Our guys have been away, they’ve been pretty much in isolation the last few weeks,” Jones said. “Everyone on our end, they’re doing well.”
Asked specifically if members of the basketball side of the organization (players, coaches, trainers, etc.) had been tested for COVID-19, Jones declined to give those details.
Said Jones: “I get that question a lot. That’s the one thing I’m very sensitive with is our guys’ personal medical information. I’m pretty sure if one of our guys was doing in a bad way, people would know. The fact that our guys are doing well says that we’re in good shape.”
In terms of getting back on the floor, Jones seems cautiously optimistic, though there’s no reason to believe NBA teams have heard anything new for a few days. They are waiting out the outbreak like the rest of us.
Jones did agree with what several players have no said regarding at least a two-week minicamp or something similar to get players back to anything near full speed to resume play. At the same time, players are receiving treatment and workouts from Suns staff members in more of a one-on-one capacity as members of the team practice self-isolation for at least the rest of March.
Something I’m sure many of us had wondered about (or maybe just weirdos like me) is the ongoing construction on Talking Stick Resort Arena. If the Suns play any more games during the timeframe the NBA is considering (June at the earliest is what seems to be the working theory), it would infringe upon renovations scheduled to expand and improve the building ahead of the 2020-21 season. Other options surely exist, from the Madhouse at McDowell to perhaps Desert Financial Arena where Arizona State plays, but losing even more revenue by missing out on seating for fans who will by that point be enormously hungry for basketball would be pretty painful for the team.
Said Jones on where the team will play: “We’ll cross that when we get there. I just know that we’ll figure it out. It’s important that we stay on schedule (with construction) but at the same time, it’s important that we play these games and we’ll figure that out if we get to that point.”