While the last two seasons have had their share of difficulties for the Detroit Pistons, they were incredibly fortunate in some respects — they almost completely avoided any issues with losing players for long stretches to COVID-19 or health and safety protocols. That remained true until two days ago when Cade Cunningham was announced as falling into the protocols.
Today, the news is worse as two hours before the Detroit Pistons tipped off against the Miami Heat, it was announced Killian Hayes, Isaiah Stewart, Saben Lee and Rodney McGruder also were placed into health and safety protocols.
The Pistons were already playing shorthanded with Jerami Grant and Kelly Olynyk out, and now will have a threadbare and patchwork roster for the next several games Under current rules, players in protocols are out for a minimum of 10 days. The NBA and NBA Players Association are discussing bringing that sequester down to six days, but that has not been approved.
Detroit will be able to sign replacement players to 10-day contracts for each player placed in health and safety protocols. They already made their first corresponding move by signing Cheick Diallo to a 10-day deal on Wednesday.
With a teamwide outbreak there are more replacements likely.