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Kyrie Irving in COVID protocols after rejoining the Nets

Just one day after the Nets announced Kyrie Irving’s impending return to the team, Irving has entered into the NBA’s health and safety protocols, according to The Athletic‘s Shams Charania.

The news comes less than an hour after Brooklyn confirmed that Kevin Durant had also entered into the protocols, ruling the NBA’s leading scorer out for Saturday’s game against the Magic.

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Irving’s addition brings the list of Nets players in protocols to nine, including Durant, James Harden, LaMarcus Aldridge, DeAndre’ Bembry, Bruce Brown, Jevon Carter, James Johnson and Paul Millsap.

On Friday, the Nets announced that Irving would be re-joining the team “for games and practices in which he is eligible to participate” due in part to the growing list of Nets players in the health and safety protocols.

“We arrived at this decision with the full support of our players and after careful consideration of our current circumstances, including players missing games due to injuries and health and safety protocols,” Nets general manager Sean Marks said in a statement Friday.

Under a New York City mandate, the seven-time All-Star is not allowed to play in home games due to his unvaccinated status—although he is allowed to practice with the team. Irving has yet to play with the team this season after the Nets initially opted against making him a part-time player.

On Friday, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported that Irving will need time getting back into playing shape and will also need to test negative for COVID-19 on five consecutive days before rejoining the squad.

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