Patrick Ewing, the Knicks great who is now coaching the Georgetown University men’s basketball team, announced on Friday evening that he had Covid-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus.
“This virus is serious and should not be taken lightly,” Ewing said in a statement from the university’s athletic department. “I want to encourage everyone to stay safe and take care of yourselves and your loved ones.”
The statement said that Ewing, 57, was “under care and isolated” at a hospital in the Washington area and that he was the only person in the men’s basketball program known to have tested positive.
I want to share that I have tested positive for COVID-19. This virus is serious and should not be taken lightly. I want to encourage everyone to stay safe and take care of yourselves and your loved ones. pic.twitter.com/a2fMuhIZyG
— Patrick Ewing (@CoachEwing33) May 22, 2020
As of Friday night, at least 5.1 million cases of the coronavirus had been confirmed around the world, and at least 335,000 people had died during the pandemic. A handful of N.B.A. players are known to have tested positive for the coronavirus, as has James L. Dolan, the owner of the Knicks.
Ewing’s diagnosis came as many states had begun relaxing restrictions in an effort to restart their economies and return to normalcy after shutdowns associated with the pandemic.
The N.B.A., which suspended operations on March 11, began allowing clubs to open facilities for socially distanced, voluntary workouts about two weeks ago but has not determined when it will stage games again.
Ewing recently concluded his third season coaching at Georgetown, his alma mater. He has compiled a record of 49-46. He had recently been in the spotlight because of the ESPN documentary series “The Last Dance,” which detailed some of his battles in the playoffs with Michael Jordan’s Chicago Bulls.