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Friday’s Grizzlies-Timberwolves postponed due to health and safety protocols

Karl-Anthony Towns, Ja Morant, Jonas Valanciunas, D'Angelo Russell, Timberwolves, Grizzlies

There has been an assortment of games postponed for the NBA in recent weeks and the latest will take place on Friday night. According to The Athletic’s Shams Charania, Friday’s game between the Memphis Grizzlies and the Minnesota Timberwolves has been postponed due to the NBA’s health and safety protocols.

It remains to be seen which player involved in the game alarmed the league enough to postpone the game (UPDATE: Karl-Anthony Towns and the Timberwolves tested positive). Or if it was a coach or staff member that caused the NBA to move the game back to a future date in the regular season.

Of course, despite a seemingly smooth beginning to the season, the NBA has seen a massive increase in positive COVID-19 cases in the past week and a half. Teams like the Philadelphia 76ers, Miami Heat, Boston Celtics, Phoenix Suns, Dallas Mavericks, and most recently the Washington Wizards have all experienced concerns with COVID-19.

Towns saw her mother lose her life while fighting COVID-19 last year, a burden the Timberwolves All-Star carries heavily during the 2020-21 NBA season.

The Celtics have had their past three games postponed before they return to the court on Friday versus the Orlando Magic. On the other hand, the Wizards have had their game against the Utah Jazz on January 13 postponed, along with their next three games.

Heading into Friday’s game, the Grizzlies were expecting to possibly get Ja Morant back in the lineup. Morant has been out since Dec. 28, 2020, after suffering an ankle injury against the Brooklyn Nets, which has caused him to miss the past eight games for Memphis.

With the Grizzlies having their game on Friday postponed, it is uncertain if they will be able to face the Sixers on Saturday.

UPDATE: Timberwolves center Karl-Anthony Towns tested positive for COVID-19, the All-Star center announced.