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Al Horford clears health and safety protocols, available for Game 2 vs. Heat

The Celtics C will be back after missing one game.

2022 NBA Playoffs - Milwaukee Bucks v Boston Celtics
Al Horford of the Boston Celtics warms up before Game 7 of the 2022 NBA Playoffs Eastern Conference Semifinals on May 15, 2022 at TD Garden in Boston, Massachusets.
Photo by Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images

May 19 update: Horford has successfully cleared protocols and is available for Game 2 against the Heat. This is a big boost for Boston on both ends of the floor, as Horford should be able to take advantage of some size limitations Miami has.


May 19 update: Horford has been upgraded to questionable for Game 2, which means he might have produced a negative COVID test Wednesday and would need to produce another one today to be cleared.


May 18 update: Horford remains in health and safety protocols and is officially listed as doubtful for Game 2 against the Heat.


The Boston Celtics have placed Al Hoford in the league’s health and safety protocols, ruling him out for Tuesday’s game against the Miami Heat.

This is a big blow for the Celtics, especially given Horford’s production throughout the first few rounds. The veteran big man has turned back the clock in the postseason, playing exceptional defense and knocking down jump shots. With Horford out, look for Robert Williams and Daniel Theis to handle frontcourt duties for the Celtics.

There were questions about Horford’s vaccination status heading into the postseason given Toronto’s vaccine requirements, but the Celtics didn’t give a clear answer. We’ll see if Horford can clear protocols in time for Game 2, but it seems unlikely given that contest is 48 hours away.

Marcus Smart has also been ruled out for Game 1, and both absences have impacted the line significantly. The Heat entered the day as 1.5-point favorites and are now 4-point favorites per DraftKings Sportsbook, which makes sense given Boston is down two starters.