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NBA’s Gobert details coronavirus effects

Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert was the first NBA player to test positive for coronavirus, bringing the basketball season to a halt - GEORGE FREY / ©AFP
Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert was the first NBA player to test positive for coronavirus, bringing the basketball season to a halt - GEORGE FREY / ©AFP

(AFP)

Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert, whose positive coronavirus test prompted the NBA to shut down its season, says the virus has caused him to lose his sense of smell.

The French big man, whose defensive talents earned him the nickname the “Stifle Tower,” tested positive for COVID-19 on March 11, the result bringing the NBA season to an abrupt halt.

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In social media posts since then, the 27-year-old had said he was feeling better, but on Sunday he tweeted that he was experiencing one of the lesser-known symptoms of the illness.

“Just to give you guys an update, loss of smell and taste is definitely one of the symptoms, haven’t been able to smell anything for the last 4 days,” Gobert wrote on Twitter. “Anyone experiencing the same thing?”

More than a dozen NBA players have tested positive for COVID-19. Gobert’s teammate Donovan Mitchell was the second player diagnosed, and the total includes four players from the Brooklyn Nets.

The Nets players testing positive included superstar Kevin Durant, who has been sidelined all season recovering from injury.

Days before his positive test, Gobert had shrugged off safety measures aimed at limiting the spread of coronavirus, pointedly touching every microphone and voice recorder on a table in front of him at a media availability.

The cavalier stunt took a serious turn after it emerged he had tested positive. Gobert apologizing for his actions and saying he wished he had “taken this thing more seriously.”

The global death toll from the virus surged to more than 14,300 on Sunday, according to an AFP tally.

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