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Beal out Saturday due contact tracing after post-game talk with Tatum

Washington Wizards v Boston Celtics

BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS - JANUARY 08: Bradley Beal #3 of the Washington Wizards smiles during the game against the Boston Celtics at TD Garden on January 08, 2021 in Boston, Massachusetts. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

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Washington’s Bradley Beal had a long (for the situation) post-game conversation with Boston’s Jayson Tatum on Friday night. Beal had covered Tatum for much of the night.

Saturday, Tatum tested positive for the coronavirus.

That means Beal has to sit out the Wizards’ game against the Heat due to contact tracing, a story broken by Shams Charania of The Athletic.

This does not mean Beal has the virus; the quarantining is precautionary. If Beal shows no symptoms and registers a series of negative tests, he will be able to return to the court.

Washington needs him.

Beal leads the NBA with 35 points per game (he leads second-place Stephen Curry by five points a night), shooting 38.6% from three, he has an outstanding 60.4 true shooting percentage, he handles a lot of shot creation and gets big assignments on defense. Beal is playing the best basketball of his career this season.