Al Horford out for Celtics-Suns game after entering COVID-19 protocols

PHOENIX — Celtics forward Al Horford will miss Wednesday night’s game against the Suns because he has entered COVID-19 protocols.

This will be Horford’s fourth COVID-related absence. Last October, he tested positive during the preseason and missed the season opener against the Knicks. Then, he tested positive in December and missed five games. He tested positive again in May and had to sit out Game 1 of the Eastern Conference finals against the Heat.

When Horford missed the game against the Raptors last March because of personal reasons, questions emerged about his vaccination status, because Canada required all foreign nationals to be vaccinated in order to enter the country. Horford later told the Globe he was vaccinated.

He sat out Monday night’s win over the Raptors in Toronto, but that was because he has not played in games on back-to-back nights this season. Canada’s mandate is no longer in effect.

The NBA has loosened its COVID restrictions this season, requiring players who are not fully vaccinated to be tested once a week rather than daily. Fully vaccinated players are only required to be tested when directed by a team or league physician, or a government authority.

Adam Himmelsbach can be reached at [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter @adamhimmelsbach.

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