After leaving the NBA's Orlando, Florida, bubble campus for an excused personal reason, Los Angeles Clippers guard Lou Williams is now the subject of an official league investigation to determine what he did while he was away. The investigation will serve to determine the length of time Williams must quarantine before rejoining his team for the association's official restart, which begins on July 30.
The Athletic's Shams Charania reported on the inquiry via Twitter on Saturday. Meanwhile, ESPN's Ramona Shelburne and Bobby Marks provided additional details about Williams' activities and how the NBA is addressing them.
As relayed by ESPN, Williams was photographed by hip-hop star Jack Harlow at an Atlanta gentlemen's club on Thursday night. The "Whats Poppin" rapper then posted the image of the three-time Sixth Man of the Year to his Instagram story but later deleted the post. On Friday, Harlow tweeted that it had been an old picture of him and Williams and that he was simply "reminiscing cuz I miss him."
That photograph, however, showed Williams wearing an NBA mask that was issued to players at the Orlando campus.
The 33-year-old combo guard — who has appeared in 60 games for the Clippers this season, averaging 18.7 points and 5.7 assists per contest — has reportedly been interviewed by NBA security about his whereabouts during the absence. Per ESPN's sources, he admitted to them that he did go to the Magic City gentlemen's club in Atlanta on Thursday, but he claimed that it was only for a short time and that there were no entertainers present while he was there.
Williams reportedly had attended a viewing earlier that evening before going to Magic City for dinner. On Friday, he indicated that his teammates were already aware that he liked to dine at the gentlemen's club in a tweet that included the hashtags #Maskon and #inandout.
If it is determined that Williams incurred COVID-19 risk beyond what had been approved within the scope of his excused absence, his quarantine could be extended up to 10 days, should the association's infectious disease experts recommended it.
Depending on the length of his quarantine, Williams could potentially miss games, which would impact him financially in terms of his per-game salary. His absence could also potentially impact the Clippers on the court and in the standings. With eight seeding contests to play, L.A. sits in the No. 2 spot in the Western Conference, just 1.5 games ahead of the third-place Denver Nuggets and three games ahead of the No. 4 Utah Jazz.
As shared earlier this month by The Inquisitr, Bleacher Report's Andy Bailey suggested a hypothetical trade that would see Williams move on to the Orlando Magic as part of a package for the Clippers to acquire talented young big man Aaron Gordon.