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Mavericks-Pelicans, Celtics-Bulls postponed due to coronavirus

Mavericks forward Maxi Kleber vs. Pelicans

NEW ORLEANS, LA - DECEMBER 3: Maxi Kleber #42 of the Dallas Mavericks shoots the ball against the New Orleans Pelicans on December 3, 2019 at the Smoothie King Center in New Orleans, Louisiana. 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 2019 NBAE (Photo by Layne Murdoch Jr./NBAE via Getty Images)

NBAE via Getty Images

Kristaps Porzingis’ planned season debut must wait.

Mavericks-Pelicans and Celtics-Bulls have been postponed due to coronavirus.

NBA release:

The National Basketball Association games scheduled for tonight between the New Orleans Pelicans and Dallas Mavericks [in Dallas] and tomorrow between the Boston Celtics and Chicago Bulls at United Center [in Chicago] have been postponed in accordance with the league’s Health and Safety Protocols.

The NBA and NBPA will be meeting today about modifying the league’s Health and Safety Protocols.

The Mavericks shut down their facility after at least two players tested positive for coronavirus. Maxi Kleber is out 10-14 days, which would align with a positive test. Josh Richardson, Jalen Brunson and Dorian Finney-Smith – one of whom reportedly tested positive – are also out due to coronavirus protocols.

The Celtics also had at least two players test positive for coronavirus: Robert Williams III and Jayson Tatum. Boston seemingly had the minimum-eight-necessary players available for a game against Miami yesterday – a game postponed due to coronavirus issues within the Heat.

These are the third and fourth games postponed this season. The Rockets’ opener against the Thunder was also postponed.

The NBA is having so many coronavirus issues in part because the league has been aggressively cautious in sidelining close contacts (and in part because the league is playing through a pandemic). The NBA has shown no signs of pausing the season. In fact, the league has gone the other way – implementing procedures to reduce circumstances in which players who didn’t test positive must be sidelined. Expect today’s meeting between the NBA and players’ union to follow that track.