San Antonio Spurs C Jakob Poeltl has been placed in the NBA’s health and safety protocols and will miss several games, per The Athletic’s Shams Charania. This is just the latest NBA player to be placed in protocols on Wednesday. Earlier in the day, Cleveland Cavaliers PF Lauri Markkanen was placed in health and safety protocols. The NBA has had a tough time with players landing in Covid-19 protocols lately.
Along with Poeltl and Markkanen, the NBA also has Kevin Love, Khris Middleton and Tobias Harris in Covid protocols. That’s just the big names who are sidelined. Poeltl will join them on the Covid list and won’t play for the Spurs against the Dallas Mavericks on Wednesday night.
With Poeltl out, the Spurs really don’t have another true center on the roster. Well, at least not an experienced one. Jock Landale is the other player listed as a center. He’s played limited minutes so far this season. Keita Bates-Diop and Drew Eubanks are the most likely players to start in place of Poeltl.
The Spurs are also without Doug McDermott, who is questionable for Wednesday due to a knee injury. If Dougie McBuckets returns to the lineup, we could see Keldon Johnson simply slide over to center in more of a small-ball look from the Spurs. It’s been popular around the NBA lately. It may cause mismatch problems with Dallas missing Maxi Kleber and Kristaps Porzingis, though Porzingis has a shot of returning vs. San Antonio.