With players isolated within the confinements of Walt Disney World’s Orlando campus to prevent COVID-19 outbreaks, leaving the NBA bubble is a huge no-no.
There’s plenty of activities set up for players to keep themselves occupied, including golf, video games and swimming. And most provisions are provided by the league so they don’t go without things even beyond your basic necessities.
But as you can imagine, the almost 1,400 NBA players and staff quarantined inside Disney probably are utilizing the heck out of Amazon, FedEx, UPS and the United States Postal Service to send for anything else they desire.
And as revealed in a recent ESPN piece by Baxter Holmes, between 700 and 1,200 packages arrive at the NBA bubble every single day.
The most prominent import from the outside world?
“Definitely wine,” Vernon Peterson, a member of the NBA’s facilities team told ESPN for the story published Thursday.
This isn’t surprising if you read Holmes’ previous story about the “secret wine society” within the NBA, revealing a substantial subculture of wine connoisseurs around the league. It includes players like LeBron James, Carmelo Anthony, Kevin Love, Jimmy Butler and J.J. Reddick, to name just a handful.
A few, like Portland Trail Blazers star C.J. McCollum, even have their own labels.
“The frequency of the wine packages is hard to miss,” Holmes reported about what is being sent to the campus. “There is wine for players, for staffers, for reporters. There is wine from websites and wine brokers and wine shops and wine clubs and individual vineyards. Many have ordered wine coolers.”
Wine has become a way for players around the league to bond with each other in Orlando. And while yes, they are locked inside the campus away from their families, but the vino is flowing. And you know it’s not cheap bottles of Barefoot or Sutter Home.
The bubble all of a sudden doesn’t sound that bad.