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Timberwolves star contracts COVID-19



LOS ANGELES (AFP) – Minnesota Timberwolves star Karl-Anthony Towns said Friday he had tested positive for COVID-19, vowing to overcome the disease that last year claimed the life of his mother and six other family members.

The 25-year-old power forward confirmed news of his positive case in a statement on Twitter, shortly after the NBA confirmed Minnesota’s game against Memphis on Friday had been postponed.

“Prior to tonight’s game, I received yet another awful call that I tested positive for COVID,” said Towns.

“I pray every day that this nightmare of a virus will subside and I beg everyone to continue to take it seriously by taking all of the necessary precautions.

“We cannot stop the spread of this virus alone, it must be a group effort by all of us.”

In April last year, Towns’ mother, Jacqueline Cruz-Towns, died at the age of 58 after contracting COVID-19. Towns father also contracted the disease but recovered.

US media reports have said six other members of Towns’ extended family had died from coronavirus complications.

“I’ve a seen a lot of coffins in the last seven months,” Towns said in December before the start of the new NBA season.

“It breaks my heart that my family, particularly my father and sister, continue to suffer from the anxiety that comes along with this diagnosis as we know all too well what the end result could be,” Towns said in his statement on Friday.

“To my niece and nephew… I promise you I will not end up in a box next to grandma and I will beat this.”

Meanwhile, two more games involving the Washington Wizards were postponed on Friday as the team faced a worsening COVID-19 outbreak, the NBA confirmed.

A statement from the NBA said Washington’s back-to-back games against the Cleveland Cavaliers on Sunday and Monday had been shelved as the team did not have enough players available.

“Because of ongoing contact tracing within the Wizards, the team does not have the league-required eight available players to proceed with the scheduled games against the Cavaliers,” the NBA said.

The postponements come amid reports on Friday that five Wizards players have tested positive for the coronavirus.

Two other games involving Washington had already been postponed this week.