NBA postpones two Nets games amid COVID surge

The Barclays Center
Wikimedia Commons

The NBA has postponed the next two Brooklyn Nets games, which comes as the roster has been obliterated by COVID-related absences, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. 

The announcement comes on the heels of a Saturday night game against the Orlando Magic that saw 10 players absent in the NBA’s “health and safety protocols” — including Kevin Durant, James Harden, LaMarcus Aldridge, Bruce Brown, DeAndre Bembry, Jevon Carter, Paul Millsap, James Johnson, and Day’Ron Sharpe. 

Players that enter the NBA’s COVID-19 protocols have two ways to return to action: they can either record two negative COVID-19 tests on successive days, or they can undergo testing for 10 straight days.

The team was forced to sign four players (Langston Galloway, James Ennis, Shaquille Harrison, and Wenyen Gabriel) to short-term contracts within the previous 10 days so they would have the necessary eight players to participate in games.  ​​

Only two players who suited up for the losing contest (Blake Griffin and Patty Mills) had not previously competed in the G-League (the minor league version of the NBA). 

Now, though, as the team continues to deal with absences due to exposure to COVID-19, the Nets will not play their Sunday night game against the Denver Nuggets, nor their Tuesday night matchup against the Washington Wizards as scheduled. Instead, the games will be played at a later date. 

The cancellation of the games comes as New York City is ravaged with the Omicron variant of the virus, which has caused record-high levels of positive tests in the city, despite a comparatively high level of vaccinated residents.

Meanwhile, the NBA has similarly postponed a number of other upcoming games, including the matchup between the Cleveland Cavaliers and the Atlanta Hawks, as well as the contest between the New Orleans Pelicans and the Philadelphia 76ers, Wojnarowski reported.