Chris Paul has missed the first two games of the Western Conference Semifinals after testing positive for COVID-19 last week, but there’s optimism within the Suns‘ organization that the veteran point guard could be available for Game 3 on Thursday, sources tell ESPN’s Dave McMenamin and Adrian Wojnarowski.
Paul had only been isolated for six days as of Tuesday, and players who tested positive for the coronavirus during the regular season typically missed at least 10-14 days. However, ESPN’s duo notes that the NBA has different standards for players who have been vaccinated. Multiple reports have stated that CP3 has been vaccinated.
Despite his vaccination status, the expectation is that Paul will still need to test negative for the virus before being cleared. He hadn’t received clearance as of the start of Game 2 on Tuesday, per McMenamin and Wojnarowski.
The Suns haven’t really missed Paul in the first two games of the series, winning both contests in Phoenix as replacement point guard Cameron Payne averaged 20.0 PPG and 9.0 APG. However, as the series shifts to Los Angeles, the Suns would undoubtedly feel better about their chances of making the NBA Finals with their All-NBA point guard on the floor.