MLS Bubble In Orlando To Feature Tiered Virus Testing System
MLS' rules around its return-to-play bubble include a policy in which any player or personnel member who "exits the bubble without authorization and attempts to reenter" will be "subject to 'enhanced testing' and a period in quarantine of 10 days," according to Jeff Carlisle of ESPN.com. Players and staff "must have written permission to leave the resort grounds, except in the case of a medical emergency." The Swan and Dolphin hotels "will be ringed by eight different security checkpoints as well as CCTV." At the quarterfinal stage, after July 29, the MLS Is Back bubble "will be contained entirely in the Swan hotel, at which point there will be seven security checkpoints." Access to the hotel "will be governed by a tiered system in order to minimize the possibility of infection and/or spread of COVID-19 to players and other tournament personnel." Carlisle noted the testing "will be extensive to say the least," as players "will be tested on the day they arrive, and then must stay in their rooms until they are cleared." Once cleared, an extended quarantine period "will not be necessary." They will then be "tested every other day or the day prior to match day" (ESPN.com, 6/27).
RUMMY & LASAGNA: The ATHLETIC's Sam Stejskal noted the league last week distributed a document to players that "highlights some of the entertainment options available to them in Orlando," and they "aren't anywhere near as extensive as those being offered by the NBA." Each team "will have three entertainment rooms available to them: one for cards, one for ping-pong and one for video games." Each team also has "one golf and fishing outing available for free to the entire squad." Other options for players include "cooking classes and paddle boats in the resort's on-site lake." Sources said that "around 10 temporary gyms will be constructed at the hotel for teams to use." A source said that hotel pools "will also be available for use." Stejskal noted meals "will be served in individual team dining rooms." Sources said that food delivery services such as UberEats are "now a question mark due to health and safety concerns." Unlimited Coca-Cola and Kellogg products "will also be available for free on-site." Meanwhile, sources said that MLS recently "prepared a waiver for contractors traveling with the team (but not players),'" that would "essentially protect the league, clubs, Disney, ESPN and other affiliated parties from liability over any potential harm caused by COVID-19 during the Orlando tournament" (THEATHLETIC.com, 6/26).