Report: NBA Mandates Masks on Benches, Outside Team Setting

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The NBA updated its COVID-19 protocols for the 2020–21 season on Monday, according to The Athletic's Shams Charania

The league will now mandate all active players wear a face mask until they enter the game, per Charania. Players will also reportedly be "strongly recommended" to wear masks in the bench area after taking a seat on the bench during a game. 

Monday's announcement from the NBA also addressed protocols outside of game action. The league will require all players to wear a mask when outside a team setting, mandating the same for all coaches as well as tier one and tier two staff members, per Charania

Zero NBA players tested positive in the league's latest batch of test results on Dec. 30, but players have still missed games due to the league's COVID-19 protocols. Rockets guard John Wall and center DeMarcus Cousins had to miss Houston's first two games due to contact tracing, and Kevin Durant is now out a week

Durant will be able to return to the floor on Jan. 12 in a home matchup against the Nuggets.