Los Angeles Clippers star Kawhi Leonard is going through the NBA’s mandatory quarantine protocol after arriving in Orlando to join his teammates. Leonard did not fly with the team to Orlando and, as a result, was placed in quarantine for 48 hours per league rules.
The Clippers were one of several NBA teams that recently closed their practice facilities after the team had a positive coronavirus test among their travel party. Head coach Doc Rivers said that his team is healthy.
Health has been an issue for the Clippers (44-20) all season. Leonard has managed a knee problem and teammate Paul George had to slowly ease himself into this season after having surgery on both shoulders last offseason.
The Clippers, along with the Lakers and Bucks, are the predominant favorites to win this year’s NBA championship. The Clippers held practices over the weekend to prepare for the July 30 Orlando opener with the Lakers. Barring complete collapse, the Lakers will likely earn the No. 1 seed in the Western Conference with the Clippers at No. 2.
According to the 113-page document produced by the NBA, teams were permitted to have a travel party of 37. All members of the travel party were tested prior to leaving their home city. Any member of the travel party not traveling with the team must quarantine for 48 hours while being tested for the coronavirus.
Upon arrival in Orlando, all those who traveled have to certify in writing that they will follow all of the NBA protocols and league rules while in the bubble.
The Clippers and Lakers will play the very first game in Orlando on July 30. The Lakers will be without guard Rajon Rondo for six to eight weeks. Rondo suffered a broken thumb in practice on Sunday. He will have surgery this week. The Lakers were already missing Avery Bradley who decided not to go to Orlando. L.A. signed veteran J.R. Smith to replace him.