UPDATED 12/23, 9:25 p.m. ET: According to Adrian Wojnarowksi and ESPN, it is still being determined how long James Harden will need to quarantine before being able to return to the team, and that aside from his $50K fine, he will also lose $284K from his salary for each game he misses.
See original story below.
Wednesday night's season opener between the Oklahoma City Thunder and Rockets has been postponed due to Houston not having enough eligible players available to participate in the game due to COVID-19 concerns, ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reports.
The game was scheduled to go down at Houston's Toyota Center.
Three Rockets players have tested positive or inconclusive for COVID-19 while four players are quarantining after contact tracing was done, the NBA said. Meanwhile, James Harden is not eligible to play over a COVID-19 safety protocol violation. The violation in question came to the NBA's attention after video of Harden attending an event while maskless surfaced. Harden later responded to criticism and denied that it was held at a strip club.
"All other Rockets players were tested again today, and all returned negative results," the NBA said in a statement announcing the game's postponement. "Houston has one additional player who is unavailable due to injury. As such, the Rockets do not have the league-required eight available players to proceed with tonight’s game against the Oklahoma City Thunder."
It was later reported that Harden was fined $50,000 by the NBA over the COVID-19 safety protocol violation.