As the Celtics gear up for Game 2 of the Eastern Conference Finals against the Heat, they’ll receive a major boost in the frontcourt.
Al Horford, who entered the NBA’s COVID-19 Health and Safety Protocols ahead of Game 1, has been cleared to return to action ahead of Game 2.
Al Horford – AVAILABLE https://t.co/wmOKz3DqyW
— Boston Celtics (@celtics) May 19, 2022
Through 11 games in the 2022 NBA Playoffs, Horford has posted averages of 13.0 points, 9.4 rebounds and 3.4 assists, including a vintage 30-point performance in Game 4 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals. In Horford’s absence, the Celtics lost to the Heat by 11 points in Game 1. t
How has Horford been cleared after less than 48 hours in health and safety protocols? Here is why the five-time All-Star will be active for Game 2 of the Eastern Conference Finals.
MORE: The latest on Marcus Smart’s status for Game 2
Why Celtics’ Al Horford can play in Game 2 vs. Heat
On Tuesday, May 17, Horford entered health and safety protocols as a result of a positive test for COVID-19.
As outlined by Yahoo’s Chris Haynes, a player can return within five days of a positive COVID-19 test if they produce two consecutive negative PCR tests that come 24 hours apart or if they produce two consecutive negative tests on game day, an amendment that went into effect on April 30.
Regarding a return to play from a positive COVID-19 test, there is a third avenue that went into effect on April 30. https://t.co/rJ4qwWIJr2 pic.twitter.com/uxvleWWa4P
— Chris Haynes (@ChrisBHaynes) May 19, 2022
According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, the Celtics had been continuously testing Horford for COVID-19 with the hope of him producing the required negative tests to return to action.
The Celtics have continued testing Al Horford with the hope that he can exit health and safety protocols prior to Game 2, sources said. https://t.co/qiKZDY67hH
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) May 19, 2022
Horford being upgraded from doubtful to available within a span of 24 hours means that he has produced the number of negative tests necessary in order to return to the court.
Celtics vs. Heat schedule, TV channels
Here is the full schedule for the 2022 Eastern Conference Finals.
|Date||Game||Time (ET) / Result||TV channel|
|May 17||Game 1||Heat 118, Celtics 107||ESPN|
|May 19||Game 2||8:30 p.m.||ESPN|
|May 21||Game 3||8:30 p.m.||ABC|
|May 23||Game 4||8:30 p.m.||ABC|
|May 25||Game 5*||8:30 p.m.||ESPN|
|May 27||Game 6*||8:30 p.m.||ESPN|
|May 29||Game 7*||8:30 p.m.||ESPN|