Saturday was supposed to be different. There was no Knicks game scheduled, which meant the Knicks couldn’t hurt us, right? Right???
And then we checked Twitter:
Obi Toppin (health and safety protocols) is out for tomorrow’s game against Milwaukee.— NY_KnicksPR (@NY_KnicksPR) December 11, 2021
Good gravy! This sucks. We know that Obi Toppin is vaccinated, but what does this mean? Newsday’s Steve Popper clarifies things a bit.
Toppin is vaxxed. A vaxxed player can be in protocols for either a positive test or inconclusive test. If positive a player can discontinue isolation and rejoin his team after EITHER 10 days from date of 1st positive test OR after he returns 2 negative tests taken 24 hours apart.— Steve Popper (@StevePopper) December 11, 2021
So Obi is out for an indefinite period. This is horrible for a number of reasons. He finally got the playing time he so righteously earned this season in Friday’s loss to the Raptors, scoring a career-high 19 points and grabbing a career-high 10 rebounds. The ever-stubborn Tom Thibodeau finally relented and played Obi alongside Julius Randle after months of crying “rim protection” and throwing a trio of hobbled, ineffective centers to the wolves. Perhaps Obi finally received a promotion in the rotation moving forward! Now we won’t know for a little while.
So who will soak up the backup PF minutes? Two-way contractee Luka Samanic? Intriguing, but I doubt it. Kevin Knox? Ew. It’s probably gonna be Knox, isn’t it.