Monday night’s game between the San Antonio Spurs and New Orleans Pelicans at Smoothie King Center was postponed “because of ongoing contact tracing” within both teams, the NBA announced less than two hours before the scheduled tipoff.
The league said neither team had the required eight available players to proceed with the scheduled game.
According to sources, the issue stems from potential coronavirus exposure to a non-team member who was a part of both teams’ traveling parties in recent days. The NBA is taking extra precaution with these situations.
This marked the second postponement for the Pelicans this season. Their game two weeks ago against the Dallas Mavericks was postponed because of contract tracing within the Mavericks’ organization, leaving Dallas without the required eight players.
New Orleans also had a scare that same week when forward Zion Williamson had to miss a game in accordance with the NBA’s healthy and safety protocols. Williamson ended up having an inconclusive COVID-19 test and missed only one game.
This was the Spurs’ first postponement of the season. They are coming off a win over the Washington Wizards at home on Sunday night. That game was Washington’s first since Jan. 11, as the Wizards had six consecutive games postponed because of COVID-19 issues within the team.
Including Monday, the NBA has had 22 games postponed this season.
ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski contributed to this report.