Mavs game against Pelicans postponed as NBA grapples with COVID-19 schedule disruptions

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Monday night’s Mavericks game against the Pelicans at American Airlines Center has been postponed due to COVID-19 concerns, the league said Monday morning.

The Mavericks on Sunday night had four players quarantined due to health and safety protocols: Josh Richardson, Dorian Finney-Smith and Jalen Brunson, who remain in Denver, and Maxi Kleber. Dallas closed its training facility on Sunday after Kleber’s test results.

NBA teams must have at least eight active players to host a game.

The NBA has also postponed Tuesday’s Boston-Chicago game due to the Celtics’ current COVID-19 player shortage. In its announcement, the league said it plans to hold a meeting with the NBA Players’ Association on Monday “on changing the league’s health and safety protocols.”

So far, the NBA has postponed four games this season, with the Mavericks being third, while attempting to hold their season out of a quarantined environment during the coronavirus pandemic.

On the NBA’s latest injury report Sunday night, 25 players from 16 teams were included under the designation “health and safety protocols,” which the league has used in cases of COVID-19 or absences for contacts brought together this season. NBA spokesman Mike Bass said in a statement to ESPN on Sunday that “there are no plans to suspend the season. “

The Mavericks’ disruption first surfaced on Friday, when they learned that a player tested positive for COVID-19 ahead of the Denver squad flight, where they beat the Nuggets in overtime Thursday night. Richardson, Finney-Smith and Brunson remained in Denver, while the rest of the travel group returned to Dallas.

The team did not practice on Friday and did not meet or meet on Saturday just before a shorthanded home win over the Magic. The Mavericks are yet to practice on Sunday, when they shut down their facility and had no plans to shoot before Monday’s game.

This story will be updated.

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