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Celtics-Magic postponed, NBA reportedly tightening protocols

Celtics forward Jayson Tatum and Magic wing Evan Fournier

BOSTON, MA - FEBRUARY 5: Jayson Tatum #0 of the Boston Celtics handles the ball during the game against the Orlando Magic on February 5, 2020 at the TD Garden 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. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2020 NBAE (Photo by Brian Babineau/NBAE via Getty Images)

NBAE via Getty Images

The Celtics – who had at least two players, Robert Williams III and Jayson Tatum, test positive for coronavirus – won’t play the Bulls tonight as originally scheduled.

Nor will Boston play the Magic tomorrow.

NBA release:

The National Basketball Association game scheduled for tomorrow between the Orlando Magic and Boston Celtics [in Boston] has been postponed in accordance with the league’s Health and Safety Protocols.

Because of testing and contact tracing within the Celtics, the team does not have the league-required eight available players to proceed with tomorrow’s game against Orlando.

The Celtics have had three straight games postponed. They were scheduled to play Miami on Sunday, but that game got postponed due to coronavirus issues within the Heat. Boston seemingly had enough players available.

That’s obviously no longer the case. Several other teams are facing coronavirus issues, too.

Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN:

We’ll see what else the protocols entail. But these leaked details only restrict people within the NBA from interacting with each other – not the outside community. This could (to a small degree) help reduce the spread of coronavirus once it infiltrates the league. But these rules don’t reduce the likelihood of coronavirus infiltrating the league.

The NBA’s fundamental problem: It’s generally unsafe to travel around the country and play 5-on-5 basketball amid this pandemic. Players come into contact with too many people then with each other.

Has the league made it just safe enough to continue its money-making operation? Yes.

But players will inevitably continue to contract coronavirus while games continue outside a bubble.