April 15, 2020 / 2:46 AM / 2 months ago

NBA's Silver, NFL's Goodell among those advising Trump on sports restart

(Reuters) - NBA Commissioner Adam Silver, NFL chief Roger Goodell and Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban are among the 14 sports figures advising the U.S. government on when to resume with sporting events, President Donald Trump said on Tuesday.

FILE PHOTO: NBA Commissioner Adam Silver speaks during a news conference before the NBA preseason basketball game between Houston Rockets and Toronto Raptors at Saitama Super Arena in Saitama, Japan October 8, 2019, in this photo taken by Kyodo. Kyodo/via REUTERS

The NBA postponed its season last month when it learned that one of its players had tested positive for the coronavirus and other leagues quickly followed suit, bringing a halt to the professional sports calendar.

“We have to get our sports back,” Trump said at the White House.

“I’m tired of watching baseball games that are 14 years old,” he said in reference to how networks like ESPN have resorted to re-airing old games to fill the broadcasting void.

In addition to Silver, Goodell and Cuban, the committee also includes:

• MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred

• UFC President Dana White

• PGA Tour Commissioner Jay Monahan

• LPGA Commissioner Michael Whan

• USTA Chairman Patrick Galbraith

• MLS Commissioner Don Garber

• WWE Chairman Vince McMahon

• NASCAR Vice Chairperson Lesa Kennedy

• NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman

• New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft

• Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones

While Silver and Manfred have said they don’t expect to resume with games right away, White and McMahon have both pushed hard to hold events during the pandemic.

U.S. President Donald Trump points at Playboy White House correspondent Brian Karem and threatens to leave the news conference after questions from Karem about people refusing to social distance and shortages of coronavirus tests across the country during the daily coronavirus task force briefing in the Rose Garden at the White House in Washington, U.S., April 14, 2020. REUTERS/Leah Millis

The WWE was cleared to resume taping its wrestling events at its Orlando training facility after Florida officials deemed it an “essential business,” ESPN reported on Monday, a move that could clear the way for other sports to return in the state.

Nearly 2 million people globally have been infected and more than 124,000 have died since the disease emerged in China late last year, according to a Reuters tally.

More than 2,200 died in the United States alone on Tuesday from COVID-19, the disease caused by the new coronavirus, a record toll according to the tally, even as the country debated how to reopen its economy.

Reporting by Rory Carroll in Los Angeles; Editing by Christian Schmollinger

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