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Back to work for Charlotte Hornets – in a limited capacity, of course
Cody Martin: Workouts a break from pandemic
Published Friday, May 29, 2020 5:23 pm
by Ashley Mahoney | The Charlotte Post

After more than two months of the NBA season derailed due to the coronavirus pandemic, Hornets guard rookie Cody Martin joined his teammates for workouts at Spectrum Center.

It’s good to be back, but it’s anything but normal for the Charlotte Hornets.

Voluntary individual player workouts began this week at Spectrum Center. However, the locker rooms, weight rooms, medical areas and Hornets Sports & Entertainment business offices within the arena remain closed. NBA regulations allow no more than four players to utilize the practice facilities at a time and each player is permitted to work with one coach. Players are required to wear masks except when they are practicing, and staff members must wear masks and gloves the entire time they are in the building. Temperatures are taken prior to admittance into the building and additional sanitation measures are in place.

“When we come to the gym, the first thing we do is go to the parking lot, and we take a temperature test out there,” rookie guard Cody Martin said. “Obviously, if your temperature is higher than normal, you go straight home. As of right now, we come straight in and go to the gym. We don’t even go to the locker room. We go to the practice facility. Four players are allowed on the court at max—two on the court and two weightlifting or doing treatment and things like that. …

“They’re doing everything in their power to make sure that we’re safe, including themselves so when they return home or anywhere other than the practice facility once we’re done, you’ve done everything you can to make sure everyone you come in contact with is safe as well.”

Reopening the facility is designed to give players access to aspects of the game that may not be feasible otherwise, such as shooting—an obstacle Martin experienced. He went from park to park in search of accessible nets during North Carolina’s stay-at-home order. Mecklenburg County, for instance, limited access to contact sports like basketball by placing barriers over nets at public parks to encourage social distancing.

“When this all began, I would just shoot outside,” Martin said. “I would find an outside court that didn’t have the plywood on top of goals, which they started doing. I was going from park to park to park to try to figure out how shoot. My older brother had an outside goal, so we would just shoot on that.”

Gyms remain closed in North Carolina during Phase 2 of reopening the state. Now that players have access to team facilities, strength training is not an issue, but prior to reopening, they faced the same challenges as everyone else when it came to staying active.

“It was really tough to find gyms, especially because people were being overly cautious about letting people come into the gyms, who they were letting in, who you were around and things like that—that’s what they have to do,” Martin said.

The Hornets, like professional sports teams across the world, provided players with workouts and equipment to maintain some semblance of fitness during the pandemic, as no one knows when the season could resume.

“Our staff has provided us with some equipment to can take home,” Martin said.

Running remains a common theme across all sports for athletes to stay in shape.

“I would run around outside—try to get conditioning in and things like that,” Martin said. “I would do a lot of footwork—agility things whether in the parking lot or at home. Really just going back to the old days before I got to college and before I got to the NBA, just doing the things I used to do outside [with] my own workouts, and the staff would provide us with workouts as well with the equipment they provided us. …It was kind of refreshing.”

Charlotte is 10th in the Eastern Conference at 23-42 when the season was suspended March 11. They have 17 regular season games left.


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