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Sunday January 17th, 2021 8:49PM

Wizards cancel practice in latest COVID issue for NBA

By The Associated Press
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The Washington Wizards say two of their players are going on the NBA's health and safety protocols list, the latest in a wave of bad news related to the coronavirus pandemic for the league in recent days.

The Wizards canceled their Tuesday practice, saying that decision was made “out of an abundance of caution." They beat the Phoenix Suns on Monday night, and are scheduled to play host to the Utah Jazz on Wednesday night. The Wizards did not identify the two players.

Miami was preparing to play in Philadelphia on Tuesday without eight players because of virus-related issues and subsequent contact tracing, a problem for the Heat that presented itself after they played in Washington on Saturday night. Boston's game in Chicago on Tuesday was called off because of virus concerns, as was the Dallas-New Orleans game on Monday and the Heat-Celtics matchup in Boston on Sunday.

The NBA's board of governors were scheduled to meet Tuesday to discuss the latest virus issues within the league. The league's general managers met on Monday, as did the leadership of the National Basketball Players Association.

The general managers talked about increasing roster sizes Monday, along with stiffening protocols about player interaction such as postgame handshakes and hugs, said a person familiar with the discussion. The GMs also discussed making even more of a commitment to social distancing and mask wearing, said the person who spoke with The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because details of the conversations were not publicly announced.

NBA Commissioner Adam Silver warned before the season that issues playing amid a pandemic would be “inevitable," but the league has also said in recent days that pausing play is not currently something under consideration.

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