Oklahoma City Thunder guard Dennis Schroder arrived in the bubble Monday night. Now it’s just a waiting game.
Head coach Billy Donovan said he is not sure when the guard will be available to join the team.
Schroder has to go through coronavirus protocol that includes testing, quarantine and interviewing with the league about what he was doing and who he was with during his absence to ensure he isn’t a COVID-19 risk.
Donovan did not want to make a public estimation about when Shcroder would be able to practice and join the team.
“I don’t have any indication… I don’t want to speak for where those things are at because that’s really between him and the league,” Donovan said.
The Thunder have been missing Schroder over these last five games. They are 2-3 over that time, including a blowout loss to the Memphis Grizzlies and another to the Phoenix Suns in which Oklahoma City was without five key rotation pieces.
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander has taken the brunt of the lead guard role behind Chris Paul and has struggled at times, averaging more than 16 points but only shooting 36.7% from the field.
Donovan also experimented a little bit with off-ball guards and wings getting more time in the playmaker spot against the Suns.
Schroder is averaging 18.9 points on career-high field goal and 3-point percentages to go with 4.0 assists and 3.7 rebounds per game.
NBA playoffs will begin Monday. If the Thunder have a game on that first day of the playoffs, it would be a week since Schroder’s arrival.
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The Oklahoma City Thunder have been missing their bigs for multiple games. They went without about half their rotation in the loss to the Phoenix Suns.
Against the Miami Heat on Wednesday, the Thunder will almost be back to a full squad.
Steven Adams, who missed three games after Los Angeles Lakers center JaVale McGee landed on his leg, returns. So does Nerlens Noel, who has missed the last two with a right ankle sprain.
Danilo Gallinari and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, who missed the last game primarily for rest and recovery reasons due to minor ailments, will also be back.
The league has enough confidence in its protocol to continue moving forward with its plan to allow a limited number of personal guests to soon enter the bubble after the first round of the playoffs.
Oklahoma City Thunder players and other athletes in the NBA will be allowed to bring family and « established longstanding personal friends » into the bubble, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski tweeted Wednesday.
There are some rules that stipulate who these guests can be and what measures will be taken before they can…
As the NBA prepares to tip-off its penultimate day of regular-season competition down in Orlando, on Wednesday, The Athletic’s Shams Charania reported that the league has completed an additional 342 coronavirus tests, with zero of those tests returning a positive result.
The league has regularly made similar announcements over the past few weeks, and despite the fact that some of the league’s more renowned players have contracted the disease (Nikola Jokic, Russell Westbrook, to name a couple), none of those transmissions have occurred on the NBA’s campus.
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