Lakers assistant coach David Fizdale has entered the NBA’s COVID-19 health and safety protocols, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.
Fizdale served as the team’s acting head coach while Frank Vogel was in protocols for the last several weeks before he returned this week.
Los Angeles Lakers assistant David Fizdale has entered the league's Covid protocols, sources tell ESPN. Fizdale was acting head coach for six games in Frank Vogel's absence.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) January 3, 2022
Fizdale, the Lakers’ lead assistant and offensive coordinator, took over as the interim head coach for the team’s game against the Bulls on Dec. 19 when Vogel entered protocols and held that role until New Year’s Eve when Vogel exited protocols. In his six games in charge, the (often shorthanded) Lakers went just 1-5.
After having an outbreak that coincided with Fizdale’s time as interim head coach, the Lakers have gotten healthier, and have no players in health and safety protocols as of Monday morning. As of publishing time, only Fizdale and radio broadcaster John Ireland are in the health and safety protocols among the team’s regular traveling party.
Along with Vogel, assistant coach Phil Handy has also spent time in health and safety protocols for the Lakers as well. Rajon Rondo was the most recent player in health and safety protocols, though he exited protocols on Sunday prior to being traded to the Cavaliers on Monday.
The latest updates to the league’s health and safety protocols allow players and staff to exit in as little as five days. That does not mean that Fizdale (or anyone else who enters protocols) will be out in five days, as Vogel’s recent stint lasted 11 days, for example, even though all NBA coaches are required to be vaccinated.
The only silver lining here, from a basketball perspective, is that constant shuffling of roles within the coaching staff likely has the Lakers ready for this situation. But that’s less important than just Fizdale getting well soon, so hopefully his case is mild and his recovery is swift.