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‘People That Are Vaccinated Are Getting COVID’: Chicago Bulls Head Coach Billy Donovan Says After DeMar DeRozan Placed In Protocols

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NEW YORK, NEW YORK - DECEMBER 02: Head coach Billy Donovan of the Chicago Bulls talks with his players during a time out in the second half against the New York Knicks at Madison Square Garden on December 02, 2021 in New York City. The Chicago Bulls defeated the New York Knicks 199-115. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
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Even though the NBA has yet to postpone a game due to COVID-19 this season, the league is still dealing with outbreaks. 

Chicago Bulls star DeMar DeRozan was entered into the NBA’s health and safety protocols prior to Monday’s matchup against the Denver Nuggets, and head coach Billy Donovan was asked whether he was surprised considering the vaccination status of his team — the Bulls are reportedly 100% vaccinated. 

“It’s pretty clear just from a national standpoint — forget the NBA — people that are vaccinated are getting COVID,” Donovan said. “That’s happened. I think because of the NBA being such a small business, so to speak, with players that have got national recognition, you see it a lot more. But I think for people that have been vaccinated that are just out there as citizens, they’re testing positive too.”

“I don’t think anybody was under the premise that just because you’re going to be vaccinated that you have no chance of getting COVID,” he continued. “I think that’s been proven pretty much to be the case, that you still have the possibility. The hope is, by being vaccinated, that the symptoms aren’t as severe. You’re not dealing with some of the things that maybe you have to deal with if you’re unvaccinated. It’s just what we’re all going through.”

It is not clear whether DeRozan tested positive for COVID-19. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), vaccinated people who contract COVID-19 tend to come down with a minor infection. 

DeRozan is the third Chicago Bull to be placed in the league’s health and safety protocol, with Coby White and Javante Green testing positive for COVID-19 last week. 

Although the NBA is reportedly 97% vaccinated, and more than 60% of players have received a booster shot, the league is still dealing with COVID-19 outbreaks among teams. 

Over the weekend, four members of the Charlotte Hornets were entered into the league’s health and safety protocols. 

LaMelo Ball, Terry Rozier, Mason Plumlee, and Jalen McDaniels were placed in protocols on Saturday, with Ish Smith being added to the list on Monday. 

Four-time All Star Joel Embiid of the Philadelphia 76ers missed nine games in November due to his bout with COVID-19, an illness that hit him particularly hard. 

“I mean, I really thought I wasn’t going to make it,” said Embiid. “It was that bad. I’m just thankful to be sitting here. I struggled with it but I’m just glad I got over it.”

The Sixers have had multiple players test positive for COVID-19 his season, including starting forward Tobias Harris. 

“I don’t think … many people understand that you can still catch COVID-19 with the vaccine,” Harris said following his return to the court. “I don’t think a lot of people knew that. People are writing me: ‘How do you have the vaccine?’ I’m like, ‘I can’t even talk to you right now.’ But I think a lot of people didn’t understand that. And truth be told, I figured out too that you can still have bad symptoms with the vaccine as well.” 

On Tuesday, NBA insider Shams Charania reported that unvaccinated NBA players will no longer be able to travel to Canada to play games in Toronto due to rules put in place by the Canadian government. 

Joe Morgan is the Sports Reporter for The Daily Wire. Most recently, Morgan covered the Clippers, Lakers, and the NBA for Sporting News. Send your sports questions to sports@dailywire.com.

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