Ben Simmons, Joel Embiid to Miss All-Star Game Due to Contact Tracing


Both Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons will not participate in Sunday's All-Star Game due to contract tracing protocols, the NBA announced on Sunday.

According to ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski, there are no plans to replace either in Sunday's game.

According to The Athletic's Shams Charania, both players were exposed to their personal barber in Philadelphia, who later tested positive for COVID-19. The barber received a second positive test result on Sunday, according to ESPN.

The exposure only occurred before the two players arrived in Atlanta. And according to The Athletic, both players have not been in contact with other people in Atlanta due to league’s quarantine.

"Participation for other All-Stars and members of the 76ers coaching staff in Atlanta is not affected because they were not exposed to the individual in Philadelphia," the NBA said in a statement.

As a result, the status of 76ers head coach Doc Rivers, who is also coaching Team Durant, will not be impacted. 

Pelicans forward Zion Williamson will replace Embiid in Team Durant's starting lineup.

For this weekend, the NBA and National Basketball Players Association established additional measures to supplement the current health and safety protocols. Both Embiid and Simmons traveled via private transportation to Atlanta and have continued to test daily. 

While in Atlanta, players and a select few guests were required to remain at their designated hotel, except to participate in All-Star activities.

Participating players, their guests and league personnel were also required to follow a league-designated testing program that has involved at least daily PCR testing and additional testing on Sunday.

Simmons is averaging 16.1 points, 7.9 rebounds and 7.6 assists per game and was set to play on Team LeBron this Sunday night.

Embiid has emerged as one of the front-runners for the MVP award and is averaging 30.2 points and 11.6 rebounds per game on 52.1% from the field. He was set to play on Team Durant.

Tipoff for the All-Star Game is set for 8 p.m. ET.