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Rudy Gay and Simone Fontecchio enter health and safety protocol, will miss game against Nuggets

The Jazz will be shorthanded when they face the Denver Nuggets on Friday. Collin Sexton and Walker Kessler are questionable to play

SHARE Rudy Gay and Simone Fontecchio enter health and safety protocol, will miss game against Nuggets
Utah Jazz forward Simone Fontecchio shoots against the San Antonio Spurs Tuesday, Oct. 11, 2022, in Salt Lake City.

Utah Jazz forward Simone Fontecchio shoots against the San Antonio Spurs Tuesday, Oct. 11, 2022, in Salt Lake City. Fontecchio and Rudy Gay have entered health and safety protocol and will not be available for Friday’s tilt with the Nuggets.

Rick Bowmer, Associated Press

On Thursday the Utah Jazz were reminded that everything has not returned to normal as Rudy Gay and Simone Fontecchio have entered the NBA’s COVID-19 health and safety protocol and have been ruled out for the Jazz’s Friday road game against the Denver Nuggets.

While the league is not requiring regular COVID-19 testing of vaccinated players during the 2022-23 season, all players and team personnel are required to get tested when exhibiting any symptoms.

Players and personnel are also required to report any symptoms, any positive or inconclusive results of tests not administered by the team or the league, and if anyone in their household tests positive for COVID-19.

The Jazz could be even more shorthanded Friday when they face the Nuggets. Rookie center Walker Kessler, who was not feeling well and did not practice with the Jazz on Thursday, was listed as questionable due to illness on the injury report.

Additionally, Collin Sexton was listed as questionable for Friday after sustaining a left oblique contusion in Wednesday’s win over the Houston Rockets.

The Jazz’s report also indicates that two-way player Johnny Juzang will not be in Denver as he continues his G League assignment with the SLC Stars, but two-way forward/center Micah Potter appears to have been called up as the Jazz face a possible depletion in the front court.

One piece of good news that came with Thursday’s injury report was that Udoka Azubuike’s name was missing. That means that for the first time since his right ankle surgery last season, Azubuike will be available to suit up for the Jazz.

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Jazz forward Rudy Gay shoots around at the end of a Utah Jazz practice at the Zions Bank Basketball Campus in Salt Lake City on Thursday, Sept. 29, 2022. Gay, along with Jazz newcomer Simone Fontecchio, have entered health and safety protocol and will not be available for Friday’s tilt with the Nuggets.

Spenser Heaps, Deseret News