LeBron refuses to play if Coronavirus keeps fans barred from arenas

The Los Angeles Lakers frontman made it very clear he will not be playing without the fans there to watch.

LeBron James #23 of the Los Angeles Lakers in action against the Brooklyn Nets at Barclays Center on December 18, 2018 in the Brooklyn borough of New York City. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

The world may be on high alert about Coronavirus but Los Angeles Lakers frontman LeBron James has made it clear that he will not be playing in future games if officials bar fans from attending.

According to CBS Sports, Friday after the Lakers defeated the Milwaukee Bucks 113-103 at the Staples Center, King James was asked his feelings about reports that the NBA sent a memo informing teams that they should prepare for the possibility of playing in empty arenas.

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The report cited, “There is reportedly concern around the league that pre-draft scouting visits and workouts could be limited or even canceled entirely because of the virus,” also noting, “The NBA has been in communication with both the CDC and private experts,”

Even with the caution being expressed by those in charge, James was clear on his stance.

“We play games without the fans? Nah, that’s impossible,” James told reporters, according to the Associated Press. “I ain’t playing if I ain’t got the fans in the crowd. That’s who I play for. I play for my teammates, and I play for the fans. That’s what it’s all about. So if I show up to an arena and there ain’t no fans in there, I ain’t playing. They can do what they want to do.”

That same day, a Division III NCAA  men’s basketball tournament game was played on the campus of Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland without fans, a step that had only been taken overseas in Japan, Italy, and Switzerland in sports like baseball, soccer, and hockey.

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