Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James has declined to say whether he has or plans to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, although he often talks about the importance of maximizing his safety by following the NBA’s health and safety protocols related to COVID-19.
When asked to confirm if he received the vaccine by Southern California News Group’s Kyle Goon, James said: “Uh, it’s not, it’s not a big deal,” as he chuckled but didn’t confirm.
But James dismissed whether his availability for the team’s postseason run would factor into his decision to receive the vaccine.
“Anything I do off the floor is predicated to my family for the majority or 99.9 percent of that,” James said. “It’s about the health and safety of my family. That’s what it came down to. Being available to my teammates on the floor is about taking care of my body and me doing everything I can to make sure I’m available both mentally, physically and spiritually as well. But anything of that nature is all family talk.”
James was found to be in breach of the NBA’s health and safety protocols this week, ESPN reported Friday night.
“It’s a violation of the agreed upon protocols, and, as we have in other comparable instances around the league, it has been addressed with the team,” a league spokesman told ESPN on Friday.
Earlier this week, James was one of several guests present at a promotional event for a tequila brand he backs and ESPN reports James won’t be suspended “as the nature of the event didn’t rise to a threat level of virus spread.”
Individuals were required to produce proof of vaccination or a recent negative test result to attend the event, where tequila was poured at a brief outdoor photoshoot — recording artist Drake and actor Michael B. Jordan were among those in attendance.
Yahoo Sports reports a similar situation happened with Brooklyn Nets star James Harden — he was fined, but not suspended by the league, after he violated health and safety protocols in December. NBA commissioner Adam Silver explained that decision by saying it was Harden’s first offense.
Here’s what OutKick contributor ProFootballDoc had to say about it: