As Native Americans fight coronavirus, basketball takes a timeout

Sports

FILE – In this Sept. 25, 2014, file photo, students play basketball at Little Singer Community School in Birdsprings, Ariz., on the Navajo Nation. Basketball is woven in the fabric of Native American life. Now, during a global pandemic, the balls have all but stopped bouncing. Already hit hard by the coronavirus outbreak, Native Americans are faced with life without basketball — or any other sport – for the forseeable future. (AP Photo/John Locher, File)

PHOENIX (AP) — Basketball has been put on hold as the coronavirus pandemic sweeps across Native American reservations.

Reservations across the U.S. Southwest have been among the hardest hit by COVID-19 and have some of the highest numbers of positive tests per capita in the country.

The pandemic has led to curfews and shutdowns as Native Americans try to fight off the virus.

The typical go-to places for basketball have been shuttered, robbing Native Americans of an outlet that is woven into their way of life. 

FILE – In this Sunday, April 19, 2020, file photo, the water tower and a basketball backboard at the school in Chilchinbeto, Ariz., on the Navajo reservation, are seen at sunrise. Basketball is woven in the fabric of Native American life. Now, during a global pandemic, the balls have all but stopped bouncing. Already hit hard by the coronavirus outbreak, Native Americans are faced with life without basketball — or any other sport – for the forseeable future. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster, File)

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