Warriors

Coronavirus: Warriors' Joe Lacob discusses economic impact of pandemic

Warriors

Warriors owner Joe Lacob received an undergraduate degree from UC Irvine with a Bachelor’s in Biological Sciences.

He has a Master’s in Public Health from UCLA, with a specific focus in epidemiology -- which by definition is "the branch of medicine which deals with the incidence, distribution, and possible control of diseases and other factors relating to health."

Suffice it to say that he is qualified to speak about COVID-19, aka the coronavirus.

And Lacob did just that with Bill Shea of The Athletic:

“What people don’t know is the rate of infection and the death rate,” he said, noting that many people are asymptomatic.

The lack of good data is fueling fear and anxiety, Lacob said, so it’s far too soon to have a firm grasp of how the NBA shutdown will affect the Warriors or any of the ancillary business and workers who depend on basketball games and Chase Center events for income.

“Honestly, I don’t know yet. The economic impact of all this is monumental,” he said. “We just lost virtually all of our revenues for the foreseeable future. But we have huge expenses that aren’t going away. I feel for these part-time employees and local restaurants and Uber drivers and all of the service people that make their living in and around events like ours. So many small businesses in the city of San Francisco will be impacted by this series of events today.

“When these city health departments and politicians make sweeping mandates, whether appropriate or not, they create a lot of inadvertent hardship. Unintended consequences. I realize that they are trying to protect the populace. But there are consequences,” Lacob said.

[RELATED: Steph reacts to NBA season suspension over coronavirus]

The World Health Organization labeled the coronavirus as a pandemic Wednesday. The NBA, NHL, MLS and many individual NCAA conferences all have suspended their seasons for the foreseeable future. Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert tested positive for the virus Wednesday and Jazz star Donovan Mitchell tested positive for it Thursday. 

As of Thursday, more than 1,300 cases have been discovered in the United States, per NBC News, and 39 people in the U.S. have died. 

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