“The taste has returned but the smell is still not 100 percent,” Gobert said in quotes published by the paper Wednesday. “I can smell the smells but not from afar. I spoke to specialists who told me it could take up to a year.”
Gobert told the paper he still feels “strange things” but doesn’t know if that’s attributable to lingering effects from the virus or the time that has elapsed since he last played a game.
“I’m starting to train thoroughly,” Gobert said. “I still haven’t played five-on-five but I train individually. I do boxing, swimming, I run in the mountains. Today I would not say that I feel more tired than before. But I had experiences a month-and-a-half ago, which scared me. I felt like ants in my toes and wondered what it could be. There were quite a few little things like that.”
“There was a lot of fear,” Gobert told the French newspaper Le Parisien on Tuesday. “The NBA was waiting for a first case to stop the championship. It fell on me! I became the image of the coronavirus for the Americans, the domino that triggered the end of the season, but it was not me who brought the virus to the United States.”
Gobert averaged 15.1 points and a career-high 13.7 rebounds before the NBA suspended its season. The league is set to resume play on July 30 within a protected bubble at Disney World’s ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex near Orlando. On Friday, the NBA finalized a 22-team schedule, which has the Jazz facing the New Orleans Pelicans in the first game.
With a rise in coronavirus cases across the country after numerous states relaxed their physical distancing restrictions, several players have opted out of joining their teams in Florida for the league’s resumption. Out of more than 300 players returning to their home markets this past week, 16 tested positive for the coronavirus and will self-quarantine.
Others have debated whether resuming play will dilute the power of the message in the ongoing Black Lives Matter movement that has resulted in worldwide protests this month.
Gobert told Le Parisien that the movement is “justified” and the money made by the players in these games can further help the cause.
“The situation is special in the United States,” Gobert said. “It is abnormal to be considered differently by the police or the justice system depending on your skin color. There is no perfect society but justice must be the same for all.”