Suns center Aron Baynes has cleared the NBA’s medical protocols after contracting COVID-19 and has been given the go-ahead to travel, according to Shams Charania of The Athletic, who reports (via Twitter) that Baynes is set to arrive at the Walt Disney World campus later today.
Once he gets to Disney World, Baynes will have to quarantine for two days, returning a pair of negative coronavirus tests before he’s cleared to join the Suns for practices. If he can get up to speed quickly, he could still suit up for the team’s first seeding game on Friday vs. Washington.
The Suns are currently six games out of the final playoff spot in the Western Conference, with four other non-playoff teams ahead of them in the standings. As such, the odds of Phoenix capturing that No. 8 seed are slim.
Still, with unrestricted free agency looming this summer, Baynes has some incentive to show that he’s healthy and productive to finish the season. He has enjoyed a career year so far, averaging 11.5 PPG, 5.6 RPG, and 1.6 APG with a .351 3PT% — all of those numbers are career highs. The veteran big man also filled in admirably in the starting five when Deandre Ayton served a 25-game suspension early in the season.