Nets GM: NYC mandate no issue despite 'couple' of unvaccinated players
Brooklyn Nets general manager Sean Marks doesn't think New York City's vaccine mandate will be an obstacle despite conceding that a "couple" of players wouldn't be eligible to practice with the team under the current rules.
"We don't see these, whether it's a city-wide mandate or whether it's the league mandate to follow, being any sort of hindrance to us putting out a team," Marks said when asked during Tuesday's press conference whether vaccine regulations would affect the Nets.
New York City requires people 12 and older to display proof they have received at least one dose of an FDA-recognized COVID-19 vaccine in order to access indoor dining, indoor exercise, and indoor entertainment.
Nets players who cannot show proof they've received a first dose won't be able to participate in team activities in the city when training camps officially open Sept. 28.
Marks said "a couple people will be missing from the picture" based on their current vaccination status, though he did not identify them. The GM added that he anticipates the entire roster will meet the vaccination requirements by the time the Nets kick off the 2021-22 season against the Milwaukee Bucks on Oct. 19.
"Those are individual decisions, whether it’s a staff member or a player has to come to terms with. It’s obviously out of our control," Marks said, according to The Associated Press.
The NBA does not require all players to be vaccinated, though specific markets including New York City and San Francisco adopted mandates that prevent unvaccinated people from entering sporting venues.
Marks also spoke Tuesday about LaMarcus Aldridge, who signed a one-year deal with the team in early August after abruptly retiring as a member of the Nets in April due to an irregular heartbeat.
"I tried to talk (Aldridge) out of it. I said, 'You don't need this. Why would you come back?' I think it was important to see his conviction, and it's not a conviction made without doing due diligence," Marks said. He added that a cardiologist cleared Aldridge to play.