Stephen Curry of the Golden State Warriors revealed on Thursday that he was the very first NBA player tested for COVID-19.
In an essay he wrote for Time, Curry described his feelings about being tested. He had just returned from a broken hand and was looking forward to playing more, but suddenly was facing the possibility of an illness that could kill him — and his family, too.
March 6. That’s when it all became very real. I had just played my first basketball game in months the night before, and conversations were swirling about what this virus might mean for the league. That night, I started to feel sick. The fever set in. First at 100. Then 101. My first thought was, “What are the chances? Could this really happen?” After months of waiting to get back on the court following a broken hand and two surgeries, I just wanted to play. But the threat of this mystery virus locked me in my bedroom to protect everyone I cared about: wife, kids, teammates, fans.
I was the first NBA player tested for COVID-19. Thankfully, my test came back negative. But that experience hit me, and it hit me hard.
Curry was tested around March 6, five days before Rudy Gobert of the Utah Jazz fell ill before a game. Gobert’s illness and (subsequent positive test) led to the suspension of the NBA, and the other sports leagues soon followed suit. After his test, Curry sequestered himself in his bedroom to reduce the likelihood that his kids or wife would contract the coronavirus if he tested positive. Thankfully, he tested negative.
The day he was tested is the day “it all became very real” for Curry. Since the NBA suspended the season, Curry and his wife, Ayesha, have been focusing on helping to feed kids and families in Oakland, their home for the last 10 years, while safely quarantining themselves at home with their kids. Their Eat. Play. Learn. foundation has helped provide 1 million meals already, and they plan to provide 300,000 meals a week to Oakland residents with the help of Oakland Unified School District, Alameda County Community Food, and World Central Kitchen.
Curry ended his essay by urging everyone to focus on the little things we can all do to help each other during such a difficult and challenging time.
We have a unique opportunity to come together, to bridge humanity; and the future of our world depends on what you do next. Whether it’s giving blood, donating to your local food bank, checking in on your elderly neighbors or just staying home, our small gestures in times of crisis can end up being the big gestures that made the difference.
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