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NBA adds freedoms for fully vaccinated players, staff

Mar 15, 2021; Detroit, Michigan, USA; San Antonio Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich talks to guard Dejounte Murray (5) in a huddle during the third quarter against the Detroit Pistons at Little Caesars Arena. Mandatory Credit: Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports

NBA players and staff who become fully vaccinated against COVID-19 are being granted freedoms from quarantine, permitted to host family and friends, and allowed to dine outdoors at restaurants.

In a release issued Thursday, the NBA outlined changes to its health and safety protocol related to the coronavirus pandemic. The new rules would go into full effect for individuals two weeks after a final dose of the vaccine is received.

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The changes include the lifting of mask requirements in practice, eliminating quarantine following exposure to COVID-19, allowing visitors at home or on the road without testing, and scheduling in-person sponsorship and marketing events.

Players and staff who receive the required doses of the COVID-19 vaccine also can work with a trainer or therapist — who also must be fully vaccinated — and no longer must submit to daily point-of-care testing.

The league announcement comes as additional teams are clearing the way for fans to return to arenas.

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On Thursday, the Nuggets confirmed fans could attend home games in Denver as of April 2.

–Field Level Media