The Timberwolves had been one of the few teams unaffected by absences because of COVID-19 and subsequent contact tracing early in the season, but that changed Thursday when the team announced Juancho Hernangomez and Ricky Rubio will miss Friday's game.
The team listed them as out with the designation "health and safety protocols," which means either Hernangomez and/or Rubio tested positive for the virus or were exposed to it. A source confirmed a report from the Athletic that said Hernangomez will be isolating likely up to 10 days. Rubio's situation is still being clarified, the source added.
The team declined to comment when asked to clarify how long either might be out. Under NBA guidelines, any player who tests positive for the virus must sit out at least 10 days after the onset of symptoms, though the team nor Hernangomez has revealed if he indeed tested positive. Hernangomez is off to a slow start this season in averaging 6.6 points per game while he has averaged 6.6 points per game but has started six of the Wolves' 11 games.
Rubio has also started slow and is averaging 6.3 points and has mostly come off the bench. Just this week, as the league has face multiple postponements and depleted rosters because of COVID-19 and resulting contact tracing, it announced stricter guidelines, limiting players' abilities to leave their homes for non-team related activities and forbidding them from leaving the hotel for non-team activities while on the road.