Christmas came earlier for the Brooklyn Nets today! According to reports, Nets guard James Harden has cleared the NBA’s health and safety protocols.
Nets head coach Steve Nash broke the news on Thursday, and as it stands, the Nets have enough players to play in their Christmas game.
Paul Milsap and Jevon Carter also exited the protocols, but the Nets still have 10 players in protocols (as rookies Kessler Edwards, David Duke Jr. and Cameron Thomas entered on Thursday). Durant and Irving remain in protocols, and Nash doesn’t expect them to be cleared in time for Saturday.
“We are not expecting anyone else to come out of protocols [in time for the Christmas Day game], but it is possible,” Nash said. “I think you have to do two negative tests 24 hours apart. I guess that gives us to tonight and tomorrow night to return two negatives, but we are not predicting anybody to come out necessarily.”
According to Nash, the Nets plan to fly out to Los Angeles on Friday to prepare for Saturday’s game against the Lakers. As it stands, the Nets have a minimum of eight players to play in a game.
Harden’s return is good news, as the Nets have had to postpone their last three games.
“We had to shut everything down just out of precaution,” Nash said.
And now, with Harden, Milsap and Carter back in action, the Nets can at least resume playing.
This season, Harden averages 20.8 points per game. This isn’t his best season, but he’s still James Harden. He can do great things when his team needs it, and as the shorthanded Nets face the Lakers, it’s the perfect time to shine. Hopefully, he does just that.