NBA

LeBron James was put in COVID protocol, but is he vaccinated?

LeBron James was transported from Sacramento to Los Angeles after being put in COVID health and safety protocol. He is expected to miss the next few games.

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LeBron James was put in COVID protocol, but is he vaccinated?
Kirby Lee USA TODAY Sports

LeBron James has been put into the league’s health and safety protocols and is expected to miss the next few Los Angeles Lakers games. But has the games biggest star received the COVID vaccination?

James sidelined again

James was transported home from Sacramento after the team found out their star would be entering COVID protocols on Tuesday morning.

"Obviously it's a huge loss," Lakers coach Frank Vogel told reporters before their game against the Sacramento Kings. "It's disappointing. We just want the best for him right now. That's where our thoughts are. And we have a next-man-up mindset."

According to league protocol, if a player tests positive for COVID there is a minimum isolation  of 10 days away from the team. After that the player must go through a series of tests to ensure he is physically well enough to comeback to the hard court. The process can be avoided if the player gives two negative PCR tests in a matter of 24 hours.

James addressed vaccine status on media day

James told reporters on media day back in September that he had been vaccinated after previously voicing his skepticism.

"I know that I was very skeptical about it all," he said. "But after doing my research and things of that nature, I felt like it was best suited, not only for me but for my family and my friends. And that's why I decided to do it."

Tuesday’s game against the Kings will be the 12th that James has been forced to sit out due to either injury or COVID protocol. James sat out a good portion of the first month and a half of the regular season with an ankle and abdominal injuries.

Lakers encouraging players to get booster

Coach Vogel and Lakers GM Rob Pelinka have urged their players to get booster shots to help fight the virus, but it is unknown if LeBron James has received any other vaccinations since the season began.

"We met early in the season or right around the day or two of that recommendation," Vogel said. "Just to encourage and recommend the booster shot and the values that come with it."

The Lakers are 7-4 with James playing and 5-7 without him. In the 12 games that James has played, he is averaging 25.8 points, 6.8 assists and 5.2 rebounds a game.