Nets Committed to NBA Restart Despite Positive COVID-19 Tests, Sean Marks Says

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistJuly 1, 2020

BROOKLYN, NY - FEBRUARY 8: Brooklyn Nets General Manager Sean Marks speaks with the media before the game between the Brooklyn Nets and Chicago Bulls  on February 8, 2019 at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2019 NBAE (Photo by Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images)
Nathaniel S. Butler/Getty Images

The Brooklyn Nets still intend to participate in the NBA's restart later this month in Orlando, Florida, despite being without multiple players.

"We have a job to do," Nets general manager Sean Marks said to reporters Wednesday, per ESPN's Malika Andrews. "We have to bring a team to Orlando. We will bring a team to Orlando. We will go down there and we will compete. That's our jobs here."

Nets guard Spencer Dinwiddie told The Athletic's Shams Charania he tested positive for COVID-19 and is on the fence about traveling to Orlando. Veteran center DeAndre Jordan announced he had tested positive as well and said he's opting out of the restart.

DeAndre Jordan @DeAndre

Found out last night and confirmed again today that I’ve tested positive for Covid while being back in market. As a result of this, I will not be in Orlando for the resumption of the season.

Wilson Chandler had already confirmed to Andrews he wouldn't suit up for Brooklyn this summer, while injuries ruled out Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving before the idea was ever really on the table.

As a result, the version of the Nets that will take the court at Walt Disney World will be almost unrecognizable from the one fans saw open the 2019-20 season.

Complex Sports @ComplexSports

The Brooklyn Nets in Orlando next month. https://t.co/AkC5h7pZSu

Durant has missed the entire year while recovering from a ruptured Achilles tendon, while Irving underwent shoulder surgery in March and was limited to 20 games. Dinwiddie, Chandler and Jordan, on the other hand, played a combined 85 minutes in Brooklyn's last game, a 104-102 victory over the Los Angeles Lakers on March 10.

While few considered the Nets a legitimate title contender, they at least looked like a lock to make the postseason. They're six games ahead of the ninth-place Washington Wizards. With eight seeding games to set the playoff field, the team could plausibly miss out altogether.

More likely is Brooklyn slipping back to eighth since the Orlando Magic are only a half-game out of the seventh seed. Were that to happen, the Nets would almost certainly get the Milwaukee Bucks in the first round and be packing their bags shortly after.