NBA players and coaches are creatures of habit, but some of those habits may be worth altering as coronavirus continues to spread.
The Boston Celtics brought a doctor to the Auerbach Center on Monday to educate the team about COVID-19, or coronavirus, an infectious disease that has spread worldwide over the last two months.
"We just had doc in here today to talk about it, to give the facts about it," head coach Brad Stevens said Monday at Celtics practice, via NBC Sports Boston's Chris Forsberg. "We're treating it from our standpoint a lot like we would if a player got the flu, if somebody were to come down with it, and he gave all the facts and all the data and the stats and how we treat it, how to avoid it and all that stuff."
Massachusetts recently reported its first cases of coronavirus, so the Celtics have good reason to be cautious. They're likely taking extra precaution with forward Jayson Tatum and guard Marcus Smart, who appeared on Monday's injury report with illnesses.
Celtics guard Kemba Walker, meanwhile, is considering taking matters into his own hands (literally) by following the lead of Portland Trail Blazers guard CJ McCollum, who stopped signing autographs after coronavirus spread to Oregon.
"I think I've seen CJ McCollum say he wasn’t going to sign anymore autographs. I might be with him," Walker told reporters Monday, via Forsberg. "I don’t know. It’s getting serious, I’ll tell you that much."
Walker may not nix signing autographs altogether, but he's at least wary of the health risks and is mulling alternative solutions.
"Everyone just needs to be a little cautious about that virus. About everything," Walker said. "I’m pretty sure I’m still gonna sign some autographs for folks. Maybe I should walk around with my own marker or something."
The Celtics host the Brooklyn Nets on Tuesday before traveling to Cleveland on Wednesday to face the Cavaliers. As of now, the coronavirus hasn't disrupted any team's travel plans, but it appears the Celtics will be prepared and educated should the situation change.
Don't miss NBC Sports Boston's coverage of Nets-Celtics, which begins Tuesday at 6:30 p.m. with Celtics Pregame Live. You can also stream on the MyTeams App.