Lakers' LeBron James to Miss Several Games After He's Placed in NBA's COVID Health and Safety Protocols
Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James was placed under the NBA's COVID health and safety protocol Tuesday, making him miss their match against the Sacramento Kings.
New York Post reported that this could mean that "The King" either tested positive for COVID-19 or had an inconclusive test result.
A source told the Associated Press that the Lakers were already preparing for James to miss several games. The insider, who knows the situation, reportedly spoke on condition of anonymity because neither the team nor James had revealed this detail publicly.
ESPN also reported that The King is expected to miss multiple games. James announced in September that he received the COVID-19 vaccination.
LeBron James Enters NBA's COVID Health and Safety Protocols
Los Angeles Lakers head coach Frank Vogel said the team learned about LeBron James' situation on Tuesday morning. He then reportedly arranged for transportation to take James back to Los Angeles from Sacramento.
Vogel said the Lakers star's absence is a "huge loss" for the team.
"Obviously it's a huge loss... It's disappointing. We just want the best for him right now. That's where our thoughts are. And we have the next-man-up mindset," Vogel noted.
However, Vogel did not reveal if James was exhibiting any symptoms of COVID-19.
If he tested positive, James would likely be placed on quarantine for a minimum of 10 days, or he can return if he has two negative PCR tests in 24 hours.
"Hopefully this is something that's short-term," Vogel said.
In replace to James, the Lakers will reportedly put Talen Horton-Tucker in their line-up.
It was not the first time that LeBron James would miss some games. It can be recalled that he missed 12 of the Lakers' first 23 games this season due to his injuries and suspensions. Tuesday's game marks The King's 12th absence. He was not able to play in the Lakers' 117-92 win over the Kings.
LeBron James is not the only NBA player who missed their games this season after testing positive for COVID. Philadelphia's Joel Embiid missed three weeks while dealing with the COVID-19.
LeBron James is the 17th player known to have entered the NBA's health and safety protocols since the regular season started. That does not include several players who missed time during training camp and the preseason.
Kyrie Irving Defends Decision to Remain Unvaccinated
LeBron James' fellow NBA player Kyrie Irving recently defended his decision to remain unvaccinated, as he hoped to return and play for the Brooklyn Nets.
Irving noted that this was about his life and "what I am choosing to do." He said he was neither pro-vaccine nor anti-vaccine, and he fully understands the implications of his decision.
"I chose to be unvaccinated, and that was my choice, and I would ask you all to just respect that choice," Irving noted.
The Brooklyn Nets player said he would stay in shape and "be ready to play, be ready to rock out with my teammates."
"This is not a political thing; this is not about the NBA, not about any organization. This is about my life and what I am choosing to do," Irving added.
Irving further noted that he still respects doctors who continue to keep people safe and those who are vaccinated despite his decision.
Irving was not allowed to join the team until he got at least one vaccine shot. He was also barred from Nets' home games due to the New York COVID-19 protocols that required home players to be vaccinated to get on the court.
This article is owned by Latin Post.
Written by: Joshua Summers
WATCH: LeBron James Placed in the NBA's Health and Safety Protocols - From CBS Sports HQ
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