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NBC NEWS: Nets used commercial Missouri lab to test players, staff

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The Nets used a commercial laboratory in suburban Kansas City to test their players and staff on Saturday, NBC NEWS reported Thursday. The tests were conducted one day after the lab made the test kits available for a fee,

The test, developed by Viracor Eurofins of Lee’s Summit, Missouri, was first made available to private clients Friday, according to the company’s Twitter feed.

The decision to use Viracor was made based on advice from a team physician, NBC’s Kate Snow reported on the TODAY show. Four players, including Kevin Durant, have tested positive for the virus.

The company says it’s capable of performing more than 1,000 tests per day and returning results the same day. Tests must be done in consultation with a physician. The company said it has been working to develop testing for the coronavirus since January.

The Nets in their statement Wednesday noted...

“We sourced the tests through a private company and paid for them ourselves because we did not want to impact access to CDC’s public resources. Using the test results, we were able to take immediate precautions and strictly isolate the players who tested positive. If we had waited for players to exhibit symptoms, they might have continued to pose a risk to their family, friends and the public.”

The Nets have been criticized, most prominently New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, for accessing tests when those in greater need cannot.

Meanwhile, Michele Roberts, executive director of the players’ union, defended teams testing their players.

“There’s nothing irresponsible — if you’ve got that information [that you’ve been exposed] — about trying to get the tests,” Roberts told ESPN on Wednesday. “The problem that more of us can’t get the tests — and I’m not apologetic about saying it — in my view, that rests at the foot of the federal government. They were responsible for making sure we were protected in that regard, and I think they failed.

“We shouldn’t be fighting about this now … but once this is done and we get through it, and we will, let’s figure out who screwed up and fix that.”