The Toronto Raptors are dealing with a full-on COVID-19 outbreak on their roster, as big names like Scottie Barnes, Fred VanVleet, and Pascal Siakam have all been funneled into the NBA’s health and safety protocols over the last few days.
The Raptors now have eight players in the league’s protocol. After Siakam and Banton were deactivated on December 18, the Raptors have since lost five more players, including the entirety of their starting lineup, both backup point guards, and their top backup big man.
The Raptors have four more games left on the schedule before the end of the calendar year. In addition to a rescheduled game against the Chicago Bulls on Wednesday, Toronto will take on the Cavaliers, 76ers, and Clippers before the calendar flips to January.
Even with Toronto’s health issues, the NBA has already said that they are not going to pause the season, forcing teams to play with a collection of G League players and rotation guys that are only holding on by a thread. Toronto will be playing shorthanded for a long time as a result of these recent developments.
Toronto Raptors COVID-19 Tracker
- PG Fred VanVleet (Dec. 21)
- PG Malachi Flynn (Dec. 21)
- SF Scottie Barnes (Dec. 21)
- C Precious Achiuwa (Dec. 21)
- SF OG Anunoby (Dec. 22)
- SF Justin Champagnie (Dec. 24)
- PG Isaac Bonga (Dec. 24)
David Johnson remains sidelined due to an injury. Goran Dragic is away from the team.
The league mandates that players who test positive will need to wait at least five days before returning to action, though they could return sooner than expected if they test negative twice in a 24-hour span.
While Adam Silver has discussed shortening the period in which vaccinated players have to wait before they can return to the floor, the current protocols could keep these players out for the rest of the 2021 calendar year. Toronto has signed five players in order to make up for the lack of talent on the roster.
Pascal Siakam, Khem Birch, and Gary Trent Jr. cleared protocols on Dec. 27.
Toronto Raptors planned replacement players
- PF Juwan Morgan (Signed 12/23)
- C Daniel Oturu (Signed 12/24)
- PG Tremont Waters (Signed 12/23)
- C DJ Wilson (Signed 12/23)
The Raptors chose to add an undersized point guard in Waters, as he is sporting two years of experience with the rival Celtics. Morgan, who had some time in Utah, will compete with Wilson for time in the paint.
The Raptors may not be out of the woods yet regarding this outbreak, so follow this tracker to find out who is available for Toronto.