LeBron James escapes sanction over COVID-19 rule breach: reports

Published May 23, 2021, 10:00 AM

by Agence-France-Presse

LeBron James of the Los Angeles Lakers dribbles the ball during the game against the Golden State Warriors during the 2021 NBA Play-In Tournament on May 19, 2021 at STAPLES Center in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Juan Ocampo / NBAE / Getty Images / Getty Images via AFP)

Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James broke NBA rules regarding COVID-19 but will not face sanction over the protocol breach, US media reported Saturday.

James, who will spearhead the Lakers in their opening playoff game against the Phoenix Suns on Sunday, violated health and safety regulations after attending a promotional event for a brand of tequila he has invested in, ESPN reported.

Hollywood actor Michael B. Jordan and singer Drake both attended the event with James, which took place before the Lakers win over the Golden State Warriors on Wednesday.

Although invitees were required to show proof of a negative test or vaccination to get access to the event, James was deemed to be in breach of the NBA’s COVID-19 protocols.

“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,” an NBA spokesman told ESPN.

James will not face suspension however because the breach was not regarded as serious enough to risk spreading the virus. 

According to NBA regulations, players found to have breached health and safety protocols can receive warnings, fines or suspensions depending on the seriousness of the breach.

James’ Lakers teammate Dennis Schroder was recently required to miss 10 days because of COVID-19 protocols.