According to Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports, the Charlotte Hornets are having their next two games postponed due to health and safety protocols.
The league announces the San Antonio Spurs’ next three games and the Charlotte Hornets’ next two games have been postponed in accordance with the Health and Safety Protocols.— Chris Haynes (@ChrisBHaynes) February 16, 2021
Despite a COVD-19 vaccine being discussed throughout the NBA over the past several weeks, there are still outbreaks related to COVID-19 contact tracing that have caused the NBA to stop entire games. The Denver Nuggets had a game against the Detroit Pistons cancelled 10 minutes prior to tip-off due to a potential health and safety scare, so the league is clearly taking their job seriously here.
Instead of just letting the Nuggets rest up though, the league decided to reschedule some games.
The NBA just announced it has added Denver at Cleveland to the schedule for Friday to replace the Denver/Charlotte game postponed earlier today— Marc Stein (@TheSteinLine) February 16, 2021
The Denver Nuggets will now play the Cleveland Cavaliers on Friday, per the NBA, to replace their postponed game against Charlotte.
The Nuggets are just beginning a four-game road trip against the Boston Celtics this evening, will go to play the Washington Wizards on a back-to-back the next day, and finish up with games against Cleveland on Friday and the Atlanta Hawks on Sunday. Going to Charlotte would have made more logistical sense, but a stop in Cleveland isn’t far enough out of the way to make a fuss about.
The San Antonio Spurs and Cleveland Cavaliers were supposed to play against each other on Wednesday night, but due to a postponement due to contact tracing within the Spurs organization, the Cavaliers now have little to this week. They were already going to have three days off on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, so a Friday game against the Nuggets actually makes a lot of sense for Cleveland.
Rather than have all four teams miss games due to contact tracing, the NBA decided to streamline the issue and pit the Nuggets and Cavaliers against each other.
The Nuggets are about to begin a stretch of 10 games in 17 days, and while they could have used the extra off day, this will help them maintain an easier second half schedule if at all possible.