COVID-19: pledges by professional athletes as of March 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic that spread across the world at the beginning of 2020 was not only a big threat to public health, but also to the entire sports industry. After Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert was the first NBA player to test positive for the coronavirus, the league decided to suspend its season indefinitely in an attempt to stem the spread of the virus. In response, Gobert pledged to donate 500 thousand U.S. dollars to help those affected by the virus and the subsequent cancelation to sporting events. This included a 200 thousand U.S. dollar donation to the part-time employees at the Vivint Smart Home Arena, home of Utah Jazz.

Professional athletes who have pledged donations to those affected by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic as of March 2020

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Release date

March 2020


United States

Survey time period

as of March 2020

Supplementary notes

The source also provides the following information:

Zion Williamson (New Orleans Pelicans - NBA) is paying the salaries of Smoothie King Center employees for the next 30 days.

Trevor Bauer (Cincinnati Reds - MLB) organized a GoFundMe page where fans could donate to benefit workers throughout the league, pledging $10,000 on his own and setting a goal of $1 million.

More than half of NBA teams and a few NHL teams reportedly have said they are finalizing plans to reimburse workers for lost wages. The employees include ushers, concession vendors and ticket takers who work for the arenas and part-time employees like game-night performers.

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Statistics on "Coronavirus: impact on the sports industry worldwide"

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