Washington Mystics forward Emma Meesseman has tested positive for the coronavirus, according to Patrick Ceulemans of Het Nieuwsblad, a Dutch language Belgian newspaper.
In Ceulemans’ report, Meesseman will miss two qualifying games for Women’s EuroBasket 2021 in Portugal for the Belgium women’s national basketball team. Those matches are against Portugal on Nov. 12 and Ukraine on Nov. 14.
Belgium currently has the highest rate of coronavirus cases in the world per capita as of the day of this post and Meesseman is Belgian. But that may just be a coincidence because she has played for UMMC Ekaterinburg in Russia for nearly a month, only in domestic competition. EuroLeague Women games won’t start until December. Meesseman also stated that UMMC has mask regulations in place but people are less likely to follow these measures in the city streets. It’s just difficult to say where she might have actually contracted COVID-19.
Though Meesseman will miss these games, I don’t anticipate Belgium missing that much of a step against Portugal and Ukraine. For example, Indiana Fever point guard Julie Allemand is a rising star herself — in the WNBA. They are already 2-0 in their group and should make next year’s EuroBasket without many problems.
And finally, I hate to have an “I told you so” moment and go off tangent, but let’s apply this to an earlier article today.
I already wrote about how the 2020-21 NBA season may look like given that teams will be in home markets traveling from one possible coronavirus hotspot to hotspot this winter while playing games. Masks and social distancing help, but they aren’t everything.
As I stated before, it’s nearly inevitable that multiple NBA teams will have coronavirus outbreaks when they play in home markets. Since the NBA is more or less a one country league, a bubble is the best way to go to prevent season interruptions, even if it’s likely that most people will get the virus at some point.
Meesseman’s diagnosis is just an example of what’s likely coming for the Washington Wizards and the NBA. And I still really don’t want to be right about that.
We all wish Emma a safe and speedy recovery.