Celtics center Al Horford has tested positive for COVID-19, the team announced today in a press release. Per the NBA’s coronavirus health and safety protocols, Horford is now isolating from players and team personnel.
The Celtics’ first regular season game will be an October 20 tilt against the Knicks in New York. It remains to be seen whether or not Horford will clear league protocols in time to return to the floor by then. Boston has two more preseason games on its slate — one tomorrow against the Magic and one on Friday against the Heat.
Horford was traded to the Celtics from the Thunder as part of the Kemba Walker deal earlier in the 2021 offseason. The 35-year-old big man last suited up for Boston during the 2018/19 season, before joining the Sixers in free agency. Horford will earn $27MM during the 2021/22 season, and is guaranteed to make at least $14.5MM of his $26.5MM salary in 2022/23, the final year of his deal.
In 28 games last season, Horford averaged 14.2 PPG, 6.7 RPG and 3.4 APG in just 27.9 MPG for the rebuilding Thunder, before Oklahoma City opted to shut him down for the home stretch of the season.