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UNLV Hoops Positive COVID-19 Test Forces Cancellation Of Wednesday Game

Ross Everett
by in NCAAB on
  • UNLV has cancelled their Wednesday game against Eastern Washington following a positive COVID-19 test.
  • At this point there have been no announcements of additional cancellations or other changes within the Rebels’ basketball program.
  • Of the 52 Division I basketball games scheduled for Tuesday four have been cancelled and five postponed.

Earlier this season the UNLV football team was struggling with COVID-19 related issues. Now the basketball team is taking their turn. Coming off their first victory of the season the Rebels have cancelled Wednesday’s game against Eastern Washington following a member of the hoop program testing positive for COVID-19.

Eastern Washington was notified of the situation before the team left for Las Vegas to play the 6:30 PM contest at the Thomas & Mack Center. Little information has been released from the UNLV athletic department other than this tersely written press release posted on the UNLV basketball official website:

UNLV Athletics announced Tuesday that its scheduled men’s basketball game vs. Eastern Washington has been canceled. The game was scheduled to take place Wednesday, December 9 at 6:30 p.m. at the Thomas & Mack Center.

A member of the UNLV men’s basketball program tested positive for COVID-19 during routine testing.

Eastern Washington was notified of the situation before traveling to Las Vegas.

The press release was the main item posted on the UNLV athletics website and included a photo of the Thomas & Mack Center along with the beautiful Vegas Valley at no additional charge:

The concern now is for the rest of the UNLV basketball program. The Rebels just traveled to and from Manhattan, Kansas for their game against Kansas State on Saturday, December 5 and that would suggest that there could be ‘contact tracing’ issues with other members of the traveling party. Before that, the Rebels played in the Maui Invitational which was held in Asheville, NC due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The first announcement of the cancellation came via the Eastern Washington Twitter account which was then retweeted by head coach Shantay Legans:

The Rebels have just one non-conference game remaining scheduled against Pepperdine on Monday, December 14 at the Thomas & Mack Center. After that, they’ll travel to Wyoming on December 20 and 22 to begin Mountain West Conference play.

At this point, it’s tough to speculate if there will be any further repercussions. It’s not known which player tested positive and further complicating prognostication are the Mountain West protocols for basketball testing because…there aren’t any. Actually, there are likely set protocols but the conference has not publicly released them. The Las Vegas Sun speculated that if a player would have to sit out 10 to 14 days it would quickly become problematic for the first MWC matchups against Wyoming. The newspaper also confirmed that as of Tuesday afternoon no additional games had been cancelled and the team was continuing to practice.

The UNLV football team had to cancel games at Colorado State on November 21 and at Boise State on December 4 due to positive COVID-19 tests within the program. The resurgence of the coronavirus has wreaked havoc on schedules in all sports. On Tuesday night, a total of 9 games were cancelled or postponed on a 52 game Division 1 betting board. In addition to the UNLV/Eastern Washington game four other games for Wednesday night have already been cancelled or postponed.

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