Massachusetts started the initial phase of allowing some non-essential businesses to open up this week just as rumors of a July timetable for a return to play target for the NBA began to heat up. While over 20 NBA practice facilities around the league have opened up for individual workouts this week, using strict safety protocols, the Celtics find themselves waiting for direction and approval from the state to open their doors for players in the region.
Currently, less than half of the Celtics roster remain in the Boston area, with several players exiting to offseason homes once the stay-at-home order went into place.
"A lot of guys are in different places," Grant Williams said. "Some guys stayed in Boston, other guys went to other places and either went home to their families or went to places with less regulations so they could stay with gym access and stay in shape."
Multiple reports indicate that those out-of-town players will be recalled to their home market around June 1st for the beginning of a quarantine period for those travelers and likely some authorized group team workouts in their practice facilities to follow. For now though, there are still Celtics like Jayson Tatum, Gordon Hayward and Jaylen Brown that remain in the Boston area and are working out at their own homes. The team remains hopeful the Auerbach Center will open up to them in a matter of days.
“I think that we’re just hoping,” Danny Ainge told Steve Bulpett of the Boston Herald. “I mean, we’re hoping it’s any day. We’re just waiting to hear. But everybody’s got their own things they’re doing, so it’ll happen soon enough. ...
“It’s just not that complicated. What we’re trying to do is have one-on-zero workouts. Like, it’s probably the cleanest environment that anybody’s working at in the country, with the sanitization that has to go on and the coaches wearing masks and gloves. I mean, heck, it doesn’t seem that complicated."
While Celtics players have been getting plenty of workout equipment and guidance from the team's coaching staff during the downtime, many of the players are eager to return to the two-year Auerbach Center and the various amenities it offers, assuming it can be done safely.