Rockets forward Bruno Caboclo inadvertently broke quarantine at the NBA’s Walt Disney World campus and will be required to re-quarantine for another eight days before he resumes team activities, according to Tim MacMahon, Zach Lowe, Malika Andrews, and Tim Bontemps of ESPN (Twitter link). Jonathan Feigen of The Houston Chronicle clarifies (via Twitter) that Caboclo is now two days into a new 10-day quarantine period.
Any sort of coronavirus outbreak within the Disney campus could throw a wrench into the NBA’s restart plan, so the league is requiring players, coaches, and staffers to strictly follow the protocols put in place. Caboclo is the first player known to have run afoul of those protocols, having left his room during the initial quarantine period, tweets MacMahon. He was unaware he wasn’t allowed to do so, despite having been informed of those restrictions.
Caboclo, 24, was traded from Memphis to Houston at the trade deadline in February, but didn’t see much action after joining the Rockets. He appeared in just five games before the season was suspended in March, averaging 2.0 PPG and 1.8 RPG in 5.6 minutes per contest.
Rockets head coach Mike D’Antoni is unlikely to utilize a super-deep rotation in Orlando, but with David Nwaba unable to play due to his Achilles recovery and Luc Mbah a Moute rejoining the team after a long layoff, Caboclo had a chance to move up on the depth chart. Now that he won’t be able to resume practicing until next week, it seems less likely that he’ll play regular minutes during the seeding games.
The Rockets are still waiting for stars James Harden and Russell Westbrook, as well as Mbah a Moute, to report to the Disney campus in Florida. According to Feigen, D’Antoni said on Sunday that those players are working out at “their own home base” and that they should arrive “in a few days.” He declined to offer specifics on why the arrivals of Harden, Westbrook, and Mbah a Moute have been delayed.
“These are things that people are dealing with,” D’Antoni said. “We’re not going to get into why not. They’re on their way.”