With the world still in the global COVID-19 pandemic, this NBA season would be a long and difficult one.
The NBA has implemented guidelines and has postponed games to protect players from other players who could have contracted the virus. Contact tracing has been used to determine when players might have caught the virus, and immediately they have to be withheld from games for some time.
Friday afternoon Kevin Durant was told that he could not start the game against the Toronto Raptors due to these contact tracing restrictions.
It looked as if Durant would miss the entire game, and after the game, we would find out more. However, Durant was made available to play and was subbed in during the first quarter of the game to play 19 minutes before he was once again told he could not play.
Durant has now needed to start a seven-day quarantine and will not be available to play for the Nets until February 12th. The weirdest thing about this is that Durant was initially pulled from the starting lineup, played almost 20 minutes, and then pulled again.
This flip flop by the NBA has understandably made the Nets players confused and frustrated.
Durant was the most frustrated and took to Twitter to voice his frustration.
— Kevin Durant (@KDTrey5) February 6, 2021
The thing that makes this worse is the discrepancy the league has shown in these contact tracing rules. It was reported by The New York Post that Durant was maskless in a car with a worker who has tested positive for COVID. However, Durant had COVID in the summer and still has the antibodies, along with him testing negative multiple times before the game, and that is why he was able to play those 19 minutes.
Durant has then continued to test negative but will still need to quarantine for seven days, missing crucial games against possible playoff teams, the Philadelphia 76ers and the Indiana Pacers.
On top of that, Miami Heat shooting guard Tyler Herro played a full game on January 30th, and after the game, he found out someone he lives with had tested positive for COVID. Herro did not miss a single game with the contact tracing rules.
Featured Image: Else/Getty Images