Heat vs. Celtics Postponed as COVID-19 Causes Player Shortage

Publish date:

Sunday's matchup between the Celtics and Heat has been postponed due to an inconclusive COVID-19 test and subsequent contact tracing, according to The Athletic's Shams Charania

A Heat player returned an inconclusive COVID-19 test on Sunday, per Charania. After the subsequent contact tracing, Miami did not meet the eight-player threshold necessary for a game to be held. 

Boston would not have been close to full strength had Sunday's game been played. The Celtics had seven players listed as out before Sunday's game due to the league's COVID-19 protocols. Two other Celtics are currently injured, leaving them with just eight players eligible for Sunday's contest. 

Miami and Boston are just the latest teams to be struck by COVID-19 in 2020–21. The 76ers had five players out for Saturday's loss to the Nuggets, while the Mavericks learned of a positive test on their flight back from Denver on Thursday. Dallas forward Maxi Kleber will miss at least 10 days due to the league's health and safety protocols, per Charania

The NBA currently has "no plans" to pause the season amid the current wave of COVID-19 absences, according to ESPN's Bobby Marks. There are currently two games being played on Sunday afternoon, with a quintet of contests slated for Sunday evening.