cloudyn.png
Saturday January 22nd, 2022 12:03AM

Memphis' Jenkins enters protocols, 14th NBA coach to do so

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

Memphis assistant Brad Jones walked into what he thought was the Grizzlies’ locker room in Brooklyn a few days ago, then wondered if he was in the right place.

There was only one other person in the room — and Jones had no idea who the person was.

“Am I in Brooklyn’s locker room?” Jones asked.

Turns out, he was in the right place. The other person in the room was a 7-foot-1 rookie named Jon Teske, who had just been signed to a 10-day contract as the Grizzlies tried to fill roster holes created by having players lost for various COVID-19-related reasons.

Such is life in the NBA these days, with constant roster shakeups — and, as Jones learned from a text message he read upon waking up at 7:15 a.m. Saturday, shakeups to coaching staffs as well. He was serving as interim coach for the Grizzlies' game against the Los Angeles Clippers after Memphis coach Taylor Jenkins went into the league’s health and safety protocols Saturday morning.

Jenkins became the 14th head coach in the 30-team league to miss time in recent weeks because of a virus-related issue, a figure that doesn’t include numerous assistant coaches, other team staff and about 300 players.

The other head coaches to have done a protocols stint this season: Indiana's Rick Carlisle, Sacramento's Alvin Gentry, Phoenix's Monty Williams, Philadelphia's Doc Rivers, the Los Angeles Lakers' Frank Vogel, the Los Angeles Clippers' Tyronn Lue, Denver's Michael Malone, Portland's Chauncey Billups, Chicago's Billy Donovan, Milwaukee's Mike Budenholzer, Atlanta's Nate McMillan, Dallas' Jason Kidd and Oklahoma City's Mark Daigneault.

“I had COVID, but no symptoms," said Daigneault, who returned to the Thunder on Friday. “I was actually really contagious, based on my COVID levels, and yet asymptomatic, which gave me a very tangible example of how this thing spreads so quickly. If I was just not in a testing protocol like we are I wouldn't have thought to test, and yet I would have been breathing all over everybody."

Also in the protocols and unable to play Saturday: Grizzlies center Steven Adams, who was the only Memphis player to appear in the team’s first 40 games this season and who entered the day as one of only 17 players around the league to not miss a game yet in the 2021-22 campaign.

“Yes, we have to plan when we find out that so-and-so’s got COVID or so-and-so’s got an injury,” Jones said. “Who’s the next man up, blah blah blah. ... It’s a challenging time, obviously.”

And the Grizzlies already have a sense of how to navigate a game without Jenkins, who had to miss a recent Memphis contest because of a death in his family. Jenkins was fully involved in Saturday’s game plan, Jones said, noting they spoke several times that morning alone.

“Hopefully, other than a different-looking, uglier guy, older guy on the sidelines, you guys won’t notice any difference with what’s going on out there,” Jones said.

The number of players in the protocols has dropped considerably in recent days, from around 125 during the last week of December to around 50 on Saturday. Numbers still change rapidly and some players on the list are closer to a return than others, plus the league has shortened the amount of time that some players need to spend in isolation after testing positive.

But the league — with 97% of its players known to be vaccinated, at least 65% known to be boosted and with 100% of its head coaches vaccinated — is hoping the worst of this surge might be over. No games have been postponed in more than a week, after 11 had to be pushed back between Dec. 14 and Dec. 30.

The league entered Saturday with 584 players having gotten into at least one game this season, 44 more than the previous record for any full season — and this one isn’t even half over.

“The NBA has done a great job of navigating this,” Jones said. “Obviously this caught not just the NBA but the whole world off-guard. We’re going to look back on this in a few years ... we’ve been through a lot of crazy times, but this last month has been nuts.”

___

More AP NBA: https://apnews.com/hub/NBA and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP Sports, AP Online Basketball, AP Sports - NBA
© Copyright 2022 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Obama honors late Senate leader as man 'who got things done'
Two American presidents and other Democratic leaders gathered in Nevada to commemorate former Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid
4:00PM ( 23 minutes ago )
Sharks plan to terminate Evander Kane's contract
The San Jose Sharks have placed forward Evander Kane on unconditional waivers with the intent to terminate the remainder of his $49 million, seven-year contract
3:59PM ( 25 minutes ago )
US offers carrots, threatens sticks with Russia over Ukraine
The Biden administration is presenting Russia with a combination of carrots and sticks as it approaches discussions with Moscow over threats to invade Ukraine
3:57PM ( 26 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
Two roads: Young, Bennett take different paths to CFP stage
Alabama's Bryce Young seemed destined to become a Heisman Trophy winner since middle school
1:20PM ( 3 hours ago )
3 more skaters out of nationals due to positive tests
Three more skaters have withdrawn from the U.S. Figure Skating Championships due to positive COVID-19 tests, bringing the total dropouts for the week to seven
1:14PM ( 3 hours ago )
Browns place Pro Bowl corner Ward on COVID-19 reserve list
Browns Pro Bowl cornerback Denzel Ward has been placed on the COVID-19 reserve list and will miss Sunday’s season finale against Cincinnati
12:35PM ( 3 hours ago )
AP Sports
LeBron leads Lakers past Hawks 134-118 for 4th straight win
The Los Angeles Lakers held off the Atlanta Hawks 134-118 for their first four-game winning streak of the season
1:40AM ( 14 hours ago )
Durant says he won't lobby Nets' Irving to get vaccinated
Kevin Durant reiterates that he won’t lobby teammate Kyrie Irving to get vaccinated against the coronavirus so he could be eligible to play in all the Brooklyn Nets’ games
11:57PM ( 16 hours ago )
Giannis returns, Bucks blow out Nets 121-109 in Brooklyn
Giannis Antetokounmpo scored 31 points in his return from a one-game absence, Khris Middleton added 15 of his 20 in the third quarter and the Milwaukee Bucks blew out the Brooklyn Nets 121-109
11:19PM ( 17 hours ago )
AP Online Basketball
Curry, Green ruled out for Warriors vs. Pelicans
Stephen Curry and Golden State rebounding leader Draymond Green have been ruled out of the the Warriors’ game Thursday night against New Orleans Pelicans
6:05PM ( 1 day ago )
Roadies: Bogdanovic scores 36, Jazz beat Nuggets 115-109
Bojan Bogdanovic scored a season-high 36 points and the Utah Jazz stretched their road winning streak to 10 games by beating the Denver Nuggets 115-109
2:12AM ( 2 days ago )
Huerter's late charge lifts Hawks over Kings 108-102
Kevin Huerter scored five of his 25 points in the final 38 seconds and the short-handed Atlanta Hawks held off the Sacramento Kings 108-102
12:37AM ( 2 days ago )
AP Sports - NBA
Obama honors late Senate leader as man 'who got things done'
Two American presidents and other Democratic leaders gathered in Nevada to commemorate former Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid
4:00PM ( 23 minutes ago )
Sharks plan to terminate Evander Kane's contract
The San Jose Sharks have placed forward Evander Kane on unconditional waivers with the intent to terminate the remainder of his $49 million, seven-year contract
3:59PM ( 25 minutes ago )
US offers carrots, threatens sticks with Russia over Ukraine
The Biden administration is presenting Russia with a combination of carrots and sticks as it approaches discussions with Moscow over threats to invade Ukraine
3:57PM ( 26 minutes ago )
Moderna gives Mexico 2.7 million shots as deaths top 300,000
The U.S. company Moderna has donated 2.7 million doses of coronavirus vaccine to Mexico as the country's official death toll topped 300,000
3:57PM ( 26 minutes ago )
Harry Reid memorial in Vegas draws nation's top Democrats
Two American presidents and other Democratic leaders gathered in Nevada to commemorate former Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid
3:25PM ( 58 minutes ago )