Dr. Anthony Fauci, the Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases who has become one of the faces of the American response to the coronavirus outbreak, thinks sports can come back, if the right precautions are taken.
Fauci was asked about how sports could return this fall in an interview with Snapchat’s Peter Hamby and his answer could spark some optimism for those desperate to see sports return.
“There’s a way of doing that,” Fauci said. “Nobody comes to the stadium. Put them in big hotels, wherever you want to play, keep them very well surveilled and… have them tested like every week and make sure they don’t wind up infecting each other or their family and just let them play the season out. People say well you can’t play without spectators. Well, I think you probably get enough buy in from people who are dying to see a baseball game. Particularly me, I am living in Washington. We have the world champion Washington Nationals. I want to see them play again.”
The major American sports leagues have had various ideas about how to return that are similar to this structure. Major League Baseball was working on a way to have teams play out the 2020 season in Arizona in isolation. The NBA was considering a plan to play in Las Vegas.
It’s too early for those plans to get off the ground, but hearing Fauci believe it’s plausible certainly gives a boost to one of these plans happening. Support from health experts is a key part of the equation no matter what the plan is.