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Pelicans' Isaiah Thomas out vs. Rockets Due to Health and Safety Protocols

Jenna CiccotelliAnalyst IIApril 4, 2021

Washington Wizards guard Isaiah Thomas (4) dribbles the ball during the second half of an NBA basketball game against the Charlotte Hornets, Thursday, Jan. 30, 2020, in Washington. The Wizards won 121-107. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)
Nick Wass/Associated Press

New Orleans Pelicans guard Isaiah Thomas will not play Sunday against the Houston Rockets as he works through the league's health and safety protocols, the team announced (h/t Marc J. Spears of The Undefeated). 

Thomas, who signed a 10-day contract with the team Saturday, is expected to join the group Monday. 

He has not played in the NBA since Feb. 3, 2020. 

Thomas' lack of availability is a tough blow for the Pelicans, who are missing five players because of injury. Stars Zion Williamson (right thumb strain) and Brandon Ingram (toe) have missed two consecutive games, while Lonzo Ball has missed the last seven with a hip strain.

All three are questionable for Sunday's game. 

Josh Hart is sidelined with a torn UCL in his thumb, while rookie Kira Lewis Jr. is battling a strained calf following a 21-point performance against the Atlanta Hawks on Friday. 

While Thomas has been out of the NBA for more than a year, he did play professionally last month, when he helped Team USA to a pair of victories over the Bahamas and Mexico. In his last NBA action, he averaged 12.2 points and 3.7 assists through 40 games with Washington. 

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The two-time All-Star saw a decline in his career following his second-team All-NBA selection in 2017, when he suffered a hip injury. 

The 32-year-old will wear No. 24 when he eventually makes his Pelicans debut. 

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