LeBron James is in hot water with the NBA for violating COVID-19 health and safety protocols. James attended an event promoting the tequila, Lobos 1707, which he is invested in, the night before the Los Angeles Lakers’ game against the Golden State Warriors.
The high-profile event had a guest list that included, Drake and Michael B. Jordan.
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The outdoor promotional photoshoot required all attendees to show their COVID-19 vaccination card or proof of a negative COVID-19 test to enter the event. Even with those measures James, who has not yet confirmed his vaccination status, was in violation of NBA league protocols for attending. “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.
According to established NBA health and safety protocols, players can be subjected to warnings, fines, or suspensions. Repeat offenders could be subject to more severe discipline. When Kyrie Irving and James Harden were found to be in breach of the NBA’s health and safety protocols earlier this season, both players were forced to pay a $50,000 fine and quarantine for five days.
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Sources confirmed to ESPN that James will not be suspended as the event did not rise to a threatening level of virus spread.
James’ vaccination status continues to be up for debate. Dennis Schroder told a German publication that he and James were the only players on the Lakers’ roster to not have received the vaccine. This claim seemed to be confirmed by the fact that the Lakers have yet to pass the required 85% threshold, or at least 15 out of 17 players, for loosened restrictions under NBA health and safety protocols.
Reaching the team vaccine threshold would allow for the vaccinated team members to practice without masks, leave the team hotel while on the road, eat at indoor or outdoor restaurants, and be allowed to have in-person gatherings at places other than the court.
James continues to stay tight-lipped about his status, “That’s a conversation my family and I will have,” he said in March. “I’ll keep that to a private thing.”