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Nets postpone remainder of homestand

COVID-19 outbreak wreaking havoc on health, scheduling

December 21, 2021 John Torenli, Sports Editor
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The Brooklyn Nets’ scheduled games against the Denver Nuggets on Sunday and Washington Wizards on Tuesday were postponed due to the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak around the team.

As of Tuesday, the Nets had 10 players in the league’s health and safety protocols, including Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving, whom the team recently re-instated as available for road contests after he was exiled for not adhering to New York City’s vaccination mandates.

Brooklyn is currently unable to field the requisitie eight players necessary to field an NBA team.

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The Nets (21-9) were coming off Saturday’s 100-93 loss to Orlando at Downtown’s Barclays Center when news came down that they would not meet the Nuggets here on Sunday or the Wizards on Tuesday.

Brooklyn is scheduled to open a three-game road trip in Portland on Thursday. The Nets would then visit LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers on Christmas Day before meeting the Clippers in L.A. on Dec. 27.

At press time, those games had not been pulled off the schedule, though it’s hard to fathom a team that is in such disarray health-wise sending players on a cross-country flight.

Kevin Durant is one of 10 Nets currently in the league’s health and safety protocols after testing positive for COVID-19. AP Photo by Mary Altaffer

The Nets own the best record in the Eastern Conference and had won four in a row before falling to the visiting Magic on Saturday, albeit without the services of Durant, James Harden, Day’Ron Sharpe, De’Andre Bembry, Bruce Brown, Jevon Carter, LaMarcus Aldridge, James Johnson and Paul Millsap.

“I told the guys (that I was) really proud of the effort,” Nets coach Steve Nash said following the loss to Orlando.

“We’ve got a bunch of guys playing extended minutes for multiple games for the first time. (So) overall, really proud of them and it was a great effort.”

Irving, who was still in the process of getting in shape to rejoin his teammates on the upcoming road trip, is likely going to see his return put on hold.

The Nets signed Shaquille Harris and James Ennis III prior to Saturday’s game, but will have to ink more than a few extra hands if they hope to field a team for Thursday’s road trip opener in Portland.

Head coach Steve Nash may not have enough players to take with him on the Nets’ upcoming three-game road trip. AP Photo by Mark J. Terrill

The NBA announced Sunday that teams could sign replacement players to fill roster spots vacated by those who had tested positive for COVID-19.

The league postponed five games overall Sunday as well as Monday’s Orlando-Toronto contest and the scheduled Tuesday tilt here at Barclays between the Nets and Wizards.

No reschedule dates have been released for any of the recently postponed games.


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