James does not have any symptoms. Per the NBA’s rules, he must either quarantine for 10 days or submit two negative PCR tests.
James tested positive after taking a lateral flow test, which can produce fairly unreliable results in about 30 minutes.
Then he took a PCR test and received negative results. PCR tests were extremely unreliable for the first year after COVID’s arrival because laboratories escalated their sensitivity to such a high degree that even a small amount of dead particles could trigger a positive result.
Some reports have shown that laboratories have scaled down the PCR test’s sensitivity, though they can still produce false positives, Yale Medicine reported.
“PCR tests are considered the most accurate available,” said Dr. Richard Martinello, an infectious disease specialist at Yale. “But because these tests are highly sensitive and specific, there is still a risk for a false positive.”
After the positive and negative results, James took another lateral flow test, which again showed that he tested positive for COVID-19. No one knows if he has the illness.
The Los Angeles Lakers chartered a private jet so that James can fly home without endangering commercial passengers.
James did not play in the Lakers v. Kings game on Tuesday night. The Lakers won 117-92.
James received a COVID-19 vaccine but refused to promote the shots.