It all started when Paul Millsap entered the health and safety protocols on Dec. 13, which led to every player on the Brooklyn Nets except Patty Mills and Blake Griffin doing the same over the course of the next week. Because of that, the NBA postponed four of Brooklyn’s games, giving the team a big break ahead of Christmas.
But on Monday, the league announced that each of those games had been rescheduled, with a time change for a fifth game.
The Nets experienced what Mills referred to as “a mini offseason” with games being put on hold. With no players left in the protocols, Brooklyn has come back together as a team in the past few days.
But they’ve lost three games in a row, including an embarrassing outing against Memphis and won’t have much time to regroup with games being changed and wedged into their schedule for the upcoming weeks, starting with San Antonio.
Brooklyn was scheduled to face the Spurs on Jan. 9 at 7:30 p.m., but the start time has been changed to noon to allow for the Nets to make a pit-stop in Portland en route to Chicago.
NBA reschedules five of the Brooklyn Nets games after COVID postponements.
It’s not ideal for Brooklyn to squeeze in a game in Oregon before traveling to Illinois to take on the first-place team in the East, but that’s what’s going to happen. The Nets have already lost to the Bulls twice and will have to face them for a third time fresh off a different time zone with minimal rest. Chicago was put at a disadvantage, too, and will face Brooklyn as part of the second half of a back-to-back.
Steve Nash is aware of the challenges that the Nets’ revised schedule poses. After the changes were made official, here’s what he said:
"“There’s no easy way to do this. If we were expecting it to be a sweet little add to the schedule, and no blood drawn, that would be foolish.”"
Nash is right. There’s no simple way to insert four games into an already jam-packed regular season, especially when we’re almost at the halfway mark. Toronto had a league-high six games adjusted, followed by Brooklyn and Chicago with five. Atlanta, New Orleans, San Antonio, Philadelphia, Detroit, and Miami were also affected.
The only silver lining here? Given the amount of Nets players who were exposed or tested positive for the virus, it’s safe to assume they’re out of the woods from another such situation where the roster is decimated to that degree. Nonetheless, for the sake of the league and the health of the players, we’re hoping the virus is under control for the remainder of the season.