Giannis Antetokounmpo Enters Coronavirus Protocols

All-NBA Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo will miss at least Milwaukee’s next game, against the Pacers on Wednesday night, after entering the NBA’s COVID-19 health and safety protocols, per Scott Agness of Fieldhouse Files (via Twitter). The Bucks announced the news in their latest injury report.

The reigning NBA Finals MVP, Antetokounmpo joins injured fellow Bucks starters Khris Middleton and Brook Lopez on the sidelines ahead of tomorrow’s game, per Agness.Figuratively, of course, since Antetokounmpo will be quarantining in isolation until he records two consecutive negative tests at least 24 hours apart or 10 days have elapsed since he recorded his first positive test result.

Milwaukee role players Wesley Matthews, Semi Ojeleye and DeMarcus Cousins are also listed as unavailable for the Bucks, tweets Eric Nehm of The Athletic. Adrian Wojnarowski reveals (Twitter link) that Matthews has also entered the NBA’s COVID-19 protocols, and that the Bucks are continuing to test the rest of the team.

Antetokounmpo has enjoyed another stellar 2021/22 season to this point. The 6’11” forward is averaging 27.0 PPG, 11.6 RPG, and 5.8 APG across 26 contests. The team has weathered plenty of injury issues already and still boasts the third-best record in the East with an 18-11 season mark. Should Milwaukee miss Antetokounmpo for the next 10 days, and should Middleton’s knee injury linger, the Bucks could struggle in the short-term.

Antetokounmpo is just the latest All-Star-caliber player to enter the league’s coronavirus protocols this evening, after news broke earlier tonight that Brooklyn guard James Harden would join six other Nets in that team’s COVID-19 protocols. For the Bulls, guard Zach LaVine and probable 2022 All-Star wing DeMar DeRozan are among the 10 Chicago players currently unavailable due to recording positive coronavirus tests. Grizzlies point guard Ja Morant, performing well enough to earn his first All-Star berth this season, has been in COVID-19 protocols for nearly a week.

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