The NBA announced that Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid will not be playing the All-Star game Sunday night due to contact tracing of COVID-19.
Shams Sharania of Athletic and Adrian Wojnarovsky of ESPN reported that the Sixers had been in contact with a stylist who had tested positive for the Coronavirus. Wojnarowski stated that the barber then retested one more positive.
Sixers head coach Doc Rivers, who will direct the team crafted by Kevin Durant, To reporters, “It doesn’t look great” For Simmons and Empiide to play in the match shortly before the league announced that two of its stars would not be participating. Media sessions scheduled for Simmons and Embiid have been canceled.
All-Star Bulls guard Zach Lavigne said, “Very unfortunate. From what I heard, they did everything right. I think they were in close contact with their barber, and the barber was getting tested daily … as if they were trying to hide it or they were doing something.” Wrong. They did everything right and still (were) in the wrong place at the wrong time. Very unfortunate and sad but I think, with the time we live now, you cannot be very safe. “
As the NBA press release indicates, Rivers and his Sixers coaching team will still lead the Durant Sunday night because no individual besides Embiid and Simmons has been exposed to an individual who tested positive in Philadelphia. The Association announced that Zion Williamson of the Pelicans would replace Embiid as a starter.
After announcing last November that the Indianapolis All-Star Game would be postponed for this year, the league decided to go ahead with a match in Atlanta, Georgia, during the COVID-19 pandemic. Although, stars like LeBron James and Giannis Antetokounmpo disagreed with the idea.
James Harden said Sunday: “I think, in general, this all-star game is kind of compulsive and just dumped on us.”
The Sixers had one game postponed in the first half of the season, a scheduled road match against Thunder, due to contact tracing. The team was shortened for matches on January 9, January 11 and January 12 after Seth Curry tested positive for COVID-19 and the other players were subsequently eliminated through health and safety protocols.
Next on the Sixers’ regular season schedule is the March 11th game in Chicago against the Bulls. Up to 3,100 fans will be permitted to return to Wells Fargo for the Sixers’ match on March 14th against Tottenham.
The Simmons and Embiid modes for these games are unconfirmed. Tobias Harris, Matisse Thybulle and Shake Milton all missed three Sixers’ matches between January 7 and January 14 after they sat, according to Rivers, at a table with Curry during the team meal.
Empiid, who had put himself firmly in the MVP race, stuck on Saturday with the Donate the All-Star’s $ 100,000 to organizations that help fight homelessness in Philadelphia. The Sixers organization also matched his donation.
Embiid and Simmons both expressed that they were looking to play against top talent in the league in Atlanta.
“I cannot take these occasions for granted,” said Embiid Wednesday night. “It feels great to be part of the best players in the world. I’m just looking forward to going there, staying safe – the first thing – and enjoying the best basketball game.”
A source confirmed Sunday night that John Clarke from NBC Sports Philadelphia That Simmons and Embiid traveled to Philadelphia after testing negative for COVID-19. Mark Stein of The New York Times was the first to report the story.