Nets lose James Harden to NBA health and safety protocols, down to 8 players

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James Harden is the latest player for the Brooklyn Nets to enter the NBA’s health and safety protocol.

The Brooklyn Nets were already going to be shorthanded on Tuesday night for their home game against the Toronto Raptors. Brooklyn had a total five players in the league’s COVID-19 protocols earlier on Tuesday. Hours later, that list of players has grown to seven.

Brooklyn placed James Harden and Bruce Brown in the league’s health and safety protocols. As a result, the Nets only had eight players available for their matchup against the Raptors, the minimum number allowed to play a game by the NBA.

The other players in league protocols include LaMarcus Aldridge, DeAndre Bembry, Jevon Carter, James Johnson and Paul Millsap.

James Harden and Bruce Brown placed in NBA’s health and safety protocols

In addition to the seven players placed in protocols, they are already without Joe Harris due to left ankle surgery performed last month. Kyrie Irving has yet to play a game for the Nets this season due to refusing to get the COVID-19 vaccine and being unable to play in New York City due to their vaccine mandate.

Prior to tipoff, the Nets announced their starting lineup against the Raptors. Kevin Durant, who was dealing with right ankle soreness, will be on the court for opening tipoff alongside Blake Griffin, Patty Mills, David Duke Jr. and Nick Claxton.

There has been an uptick in COVID-19 cases across the league. 10 players on the Chicago Bulls were placed in health and safety protocols, prompting the league to postpone their next two games against the Detroit Pistons (Dec. 14) and the Raptors (Dec. 16).

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