Kings forward Harrison Barnes announced today (via Twitter) that he tested positive for COVID-19 before the team traveled to Walt Disney World last week and has yet to report to the NBA’s Florida campus as he awaits medical clearance.
“I’ve been primarily asymptomatic and am doing well,” Barnes wrote. “I’m quarantined and am abiding by the safety protocol until I’m cleared for action. I hope to join my team in Orlando when it is safe to do so!”
The NBA and NBPA announced on Monday that 19 players had tested positive for the coronavirus in their home markets since July 1. Presumably, Barnes was one of those 19 players. He’s at least the fourth Kings player known to have tested positive in the last month. Buddy Hield and Jabari Parker have since recovered and recently reported to Orlando, while Alex Len also contracted the virus in June.
So far, there’s no indication that the Kings intend to replace any of those affected players with substitute players. If Sacramento were to sign a substitute player, the player being replaced would become ineligible to play for the rest of the 2019/20 season.
Unlike teams who are already looking ahead of the postseason, the Kings will face some urgency to win games right away when their season resumes on July 31, since they’re four games out of the final playoff spot in the West. So if Barnes or any other player is affected by COVID-19 symptoms longer than anticipated, it’s possible Sacramento would consider making a move.