Nets’ James Harden, Bruce Brown Enter COVID Protocols; Out Against Raptors

The Brooklyn Nets announced that James Harden and Bruce Brown are entering the NBA’s health and safety protocols and will be inactive for Tuesday’s game against the Toronto Raptors. The Athletic / Stadium’s Shams Charania relayed the news and did not confirm a positive diagnosis of either player.


Both players are vaccinated, per the requirement enacted by both New York City and the Nets organization.

According to the NBA’s latest COVID guidelines, “After a player tests positive, he must isolate away from the team for 10 days or return two negative PCR tests in a 24-hour period before they can get back to action.”

Pending the positive results, Harden and Brown could potentially miss five total contests in the 10-day isolation period — returning for the Nets’ Christmas Day matchup against the Los Angeles Lakers.

Bruce Brown has averaged 6.9 points and 4.3 rebounds on 22.5 minutes per game. His increased role has been warranted to fill in for Kyrie Irving’s absence, who is still at odds with Nets team general Joe Tsai’s vaccine policy. General manager Sean Marks also partook in the decision that has kept Kyrie out of the lineup.

Harden‘s absences will certainly hinder Brooklyn’s production. Despite his lower-than-average 20.8 points per game, Harden is also adding 9.6 assists and 7.9 rebounds.

The Nets are positioned as the best team in the Eastern Conference at 19-8, enjoying a two-game lead over the Chicago Bulls and Milwaukee Bucks. 

Without ample production available, should both players test positive, the Nets and Sean Marks may have to reconsider their original plan heading into the trading period (Dec. 15-Feb. 10) — including rumors of Joe Harris‘ potential departure.

As noted by Hoops Wire’s Sam Amico early Tuesday, an outbreak of COVID cases forced the Lakers’ practice facility to shut down Tuesday. Lakers guard Talen Horton-Tucker tested positive for COVID and entered the health and safety protocols. 



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