Wizards All-Star Bradley Beal spoke out on Monday to defiantly say that he has not gotten the COVID-19 vaccine for personal reasons.
“I don’t feel pressure, I don’t think you can pressure anybody to making a decision about their body or what they put into their body,” said Beal, 28, according to NBC Sports. “We can have this conversation about a lot of different topics besides vaccines, too. You can’t necessarily force anybody. I think you kind of let people come into their own about it.”
Beal was forced to withdraw from Team USA’s 12-man roster for the Tokyo Olympics back in July after testing positive for COVID-19.
“Yeah, I had it, but that doesn’t mean I can’t get it again,” he added today. “I mean, it’s no different than somebody with the vaccine. Yes, I developed antibodies for it, so my chances will be less likely for it as well. It’s still a possibility, just like there are players and coaches and staff who are vaxxed that are missing camp as well.”
Beal went on to say that while he “didn’t get sick at all” during his COVID-19 battle, he did lose his sense of smell. He also said that he has some questions about the effectiveness of the vaccines since people are still getting COVID-19 even after being vaccinated.
“I would like an explanation to people with vaccines. Why are they still getting COVID?” Beal questioned. “If that’s something we’re supposed to highly be protected from, that’s funny that it only reduces your chances of going to the hospital. It doesn’t eliminate anyone from getting COVID.”
When asked if he had thought about getting the shot at all, Beal admitted that he had.
“I definitely think about it for sure, with the guidelines that the league makes and everything that the protocols are doing, they kind of make it difficult on us to where they kind of force us in a way to get it,” he said.
Kyle Kuzma, whom the Wizards acquired from the Lakers in the Russel Westbrook, agreed with Beal, saying “it’s personal” when asked if he had been vaccinated.
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“At the end of the day, nobody really knows how things are going to go. America doesn’t know. Certain things in health should be personal. Especially us as athletes and the platform we have. I believe certain things should always be kept in house,” Kuzma said.
The New York Post reported that the NBA has just issued new guidelines stating that unvaccinated players must follow much stricter protocols than vaccinated players. It’s unfortunate that the NBA is doing everything short of literally forcing their players to get this vaccine. Doing so should be a personal decision left up to individuals without worrying about their jobs or livelihoods.