PHOENIX – Phoenix Suns center Aron Baynes learned quickly that the coronavirus is no joke.
It put me on my butt for a good week,” he told Stadium on Wednesday. “I slept for four days straight.”
Baynes revealed Wednesday he had tested positive for COVID-19 after it was reported Monday by the Arizona Republic that he was one of four Suns players that didn’t make the trip to Orlando with the team. Ricky Rubio, Elie Okobo and rookie Jalen Lecque were the others.
His family members also tested positive, he said, but he suffered the worst symptoms among all of them, which surprised him.
“I haven’t touched a basketball for over 30 days,” he said, adding that “it’s been a long time since I felt good. This morning is the first time I did some exercise.”
Baynes can’t travel to Orlando until he tests negative twice. He hasn’t yet, although Suns coach Monty Williams believes he’ll see Baynes in Florida.
As soon as he learned he had tested positive, Baynes self-isolated in his home. His wife would drop him off food but that was the extent of their contact. He said he took staying away from others seriously.
“If I knew someone that was going out and putting my family at risk, I would be very upset with those people,” he said. “There’s no chance I’m doing that to someone else’s family and loved ones.”
His final words?
“Mask up, people.”
Rubio returns after positive test
Ricky Rubio is in the NBA’s bubble.
After rampant speculation about his whereabouts, it was confirmed the Suns guard was with the team.
Why was he not initially in Orlando?
He tested positive for COVID-19 and was not able to come until he had multiple negative tests. His first practice was Tuesday.
With Rubio healthy and ready to play, the Suns have their starting five in Orlando and are only missing three other players.
“Ricky is the general of our team,” Suns coach Williams said.
Williams was clearly excited to have Rubio back because “he makes everybody better on offense.”
Rubio was glad to return to work but was struggling with being away from family.
When he tested positive, he was in Phoenix while his family was at their home in Spain. With a 6-month-old son, it’s been a challenge.
However, he and the Suns are ready to finally play again.
“We have a chance here to really get better as a team,” Rubio said.
The Suns have their first scrimmage on Thursday against the Utah Jazz.