Ben McLemore, KJ Martin Jr. cleared from COVID-19 protocols, per Rockets

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Ben DuBose
·2 min read
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Reserve guard Ben McLemore and rookie forward KJ Martin Jr. are each back with the Rockets and available to play as soon as Monday, according to Sunday’s update by head coach Stephen Silas.

Each player reportedly tested positive for COVID-19 in the days leading up to Houston’s originally scheduled regular-season opener on Dec. 23, which was postponed due to the roster being ravaged by COVID issues.

Per the NBA’s health and safety protocols, these were the steps that had to be completed before either player could rejoin the team:

  • At least 12 days have passed since his first positive test, or the conclusion of any symptoms, whichever comes later;

  • The player is asymptomatic, and there are no clinical concerns about reinfection;

  • A team-designated physician has cleared the player to return;

  • The team doctor has reviewed the case with a league doctor, who does not object to the findings.

Both players have been listed as “Not With Team, Self-Isolating” on Houston’s official injury reports, which are distributed by the NBA.

As a 19-year-old rookie, Martin isn’t expected to have a rotation role with the Rockets (2-2) this season. McLemore, however, certainly could. The 27-year-old averaged 10.1 points last season in 22.8 minutes per game off the bench, and his 40.0% clip on 3-pointers led the team.

Silas said after Sunday’s Rockets practice from Toyota Center that it could take each player “a little while” to get reacclimated to the team after missing nearly two weeks of activity. Reading between the lines, that suggests that McLemore might not rejoin the rotation immediately.

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OddsMoney LinePoint SpreadTotal Points
Washington
+110+1.5-
Houston
-134-1.5-