DeMar DeRozan will be in the league's health and safety protocols for at least 10 days or unless he produces two negative tests for COVID-19 within a 24-hour span, according to a Chicago Bulls spokesperson.
The update followed DeRozan missing Monday's victory over the Denver Nuggets after he landed in the league's health and safety protocols just hours before tipoff and after participating in the team's morning shootaround.
Before Monday's game, coach Billy Donovan said he didn't yet know if DeRozan had tested positive for the coronavirus, leading to speculation that DeRozan either had produced an inconclusive test or perhaps a false positive. Zach LaVine only heightened this speculation when he said he had his "fingers crossed" for DeRozan's Tuesday test.
But DeRozan didn't travel with the team as it left Tuesday afternoon for a two-game trip against the Cleveland Cavaliers on Wednesday and the Miami Heat on Saturday. DeRozan's absence likely will last beyond that two-game trip, sources said, unless he unexpectedly produces the required two negative tests within a 24-hour period.
The Bulls, who are a fully vaccinated team, have now had four players land in the league's health and safety protocols. Nikola Vučević missed seven games after confirming he tested positive for the coronavirus. Coby White and Javonte Green both are currently in quarantine after Donovan said those players tested positive.
Since the Bulls have three players in the league's health and safety protocols and are currently experiencing an outbreak of sorts, it's also impacting their ability to practice and hold normal team functions. Donovan already has talked about the increased testing the Bulls are facing. And group workouts may require masking in some situations.
Once a player produces two negative tests within a 24-hour period, he is required to undergo cardiac screening if he initially produced a positive test.
DeRozan ranks fourth in the NBA in scoring and is creating early-season most valuable player talk for his play and leadership. He leads the NBA in fourth-quarter scoring and has been a major reason the Bulls are just decimal points behind the Nets atop the Eastern Conference entering Brooklyn's matchup with the Dallas Mavericks on Tuesday night.