Lakers’ Russell Westbrook and Avery Bradley enter NBA’s COVID protocols

Russell Westbrook runs down the court
Lakers guard Russell Westbrook entered the NBA’s health and safety protocols on Thursday.
(Ringo H.W. Chiu / Associated Press)

The Lakers’ starting backcourt, Russell Westbrook and Avery Bradley, have entered the NBA’s health and safety protocols according to the team’s latest injury report Thursday.

Neither player traveled with the team to Minnesota.

That brings the total to five Lakers in the NBA’s COVID-19 protocols, with other members of their traveling party also registering positive tests.

The episode mirrors what is happening around the NBA and pro sports at large, where huge spikes in players testing positive have forced teams to play with barebone rosters or, in some cases, postpone games.

The Lakers hope to sign guard Isaiah Thomas to a contract if the NBA grants them a hardship waiver. Thomas has averaged 18.1 points in his NBA career.

Dec. 16, 2021

The Lakers’ issues began when the team canceled practice Tuesday after Talen Horton-Tucker tested positive. Shortly after, Dwight Howard entered the protocols followed by Malik Monk, who actually traveled with the team to Dallas.


Players and coaches have been testing since, with last night’s hero Austin Reaves even carrying the game ball with him to receive a coronavirus test before riding the team bus.

The Lakers are scheduled to play Minnesota on Friday and Chicago, who had two games postponed due to their own COVID-19 scares, on Sunday.

The team is hoping to sign veteran guard Isaiah Thomas by using a hardship exemption should they be rewarded one.