NEW YORK — The NBA rescheduled three Boston Celtics games and more movement is likely.

Toronto’s game in Boston will now be Feb. 11 instead of Feb. 12. Detroit will play in Boston on Feb. 12, moved up from Feb. 14. And on Feb. 14, Boston will go to Washington while New Orleans will visit Detroit. Both of those games were intended to be played sometime in the season’s second half, which will take place between March 11 and May 16.

Also Thursday, the league pushed back the start times of 16 upcoming contests. That has happened to about three dozen games so far in order to allow for more time to process COVID-19 tests before players take the floor.

The NBA said Wednesday it would begin rescheduling some games because of the postponements that have occurred this season for virus-related reasons. The league said it would specifically “focus on the teams with the most postponed games to date,” which would include Washington, Memphis and Boston.

The Wizards have had six games postponed and two games rescheduled already. The Grizzlies have seen six of their games postponed, and Boston is among the clubs with three games that were called off so far. The NBA has postponed 22 games this season, 21 since Jan. 10.

Noteworthy is that none of the rescheduled games involves any of the three Celtics’ games that were postponed earlier this month when the team didn’t have enough available players because of COVID-19 positive tests and contact tracing:

• Jan. 10: Heat at Celtics

• Jan. 12: Celtics at Bulls

• Jan. 13: Magic at Celtics

All of those games will still need to be slotted in somewhere, with the second half of the season being the likely landing spot.

What the current switches do create is an extra back-to-back for Boston. That’s noteworthy because Celtics guard Kemba Walker isn’t playing both games of back-to-backs as a precaution. Walker missed the beginning of the season as he comes back from a knee injury.

KNICKS: Coach Tom Thibodeau said he hasn’t talked to Mitchell Robinson about his deleted tweet and doesn’t seem interested in addressing it with his center.

“I’ve never coached through the media or social media or whatever that is,” Thibodeau said. “My conversations with him, that’s never come up.”

Thibodeau added that it’s better to ask Robinson about his tweet, but the 22-year-old wasn’t made available to the media Thursday by the Knicks. Two days prior, Robinson tweeted – and immediately deleted – “One day they’ll let me play.” It was widely interpreted as a gripe about offensive opportunities after he took just four shots in 31 minutes that same night against Utah.

Robinson has a history of touting his versatility despite the one-dimensional scoring. The 7-footer has long teased an outside shot, claiming on multiple occasions he’s ready to unleash a 3-pointer. His offseason training videos, conducted at gyms in Louisiana, have fed into that desire. There’s Instagram evidence, for instance, of Robinson nailing 10 straight from beyond the arc with his personal trainer.

But Robinson is still exclusively used by the Knicks as a pick-and-roll rim runner who scores in the restricted area. All but three of his 120 shot attempts this season are dunks or lay-ups, according to Basketball Reference.

FRIDAY’S GAMES

CLIPPERS 116, MAGIC 90: Paul George had 26 points, nine rebounds and five assists, Kawhi Leonard added 24 points and visiting Los Angeles routed Orlando as the two All-Stars returned following two-game absences because of COVID-19 protocols.

The first NBA team to reach 15 victories, the Clippers beat the Magic for the 14th straight time – a streak that dates to Nov. 6, 2013.

Terrence Ross led the Magic with 24 points off the bench.

NETS 147, THUNDER 125: James Harden and Kyrie Irving each scored 25 points to help Brooklyn roll to a win at Oklahoma City while Kevin Durant rested.

Nets Coach Steve Nash said he was protecting Durant, the league’s No. 2 scorer. Without him, Brooklyn shot 57% from the field and had a season-high point total.

Theo Maledon, a 19-year-old rookie, scored 24 points and was perfect on six shots from 3-point range for the Thunder.

76ERS 118, TIMBERWOLVES 94: Joel Embiid racked up 37 points and 11 rebounds in 27 minutes, leading visiting Philadelphia 76ers past depleted Minnesota.

Embiid went 16 for 18 from the free-throw line and dominated a Timberwolves team missing centers Karl-Anthony Towns and Naz Reid.

PELICANS 131, BUCKS 126: Lonzo Ball highlighted a season-best 27-point performance with seven 3-pointers, and host New Orleans held off a furious Milwaukee rally.

Brandon Ingram scored 28 points, and Zion Williamson had 21 points, nine rebounds and a career-best seven assists to help New Orleans prevent the Bucks from erasing a 28-point deficit during the game’s final 17 minutes.

Giannis Antetokounmpo had 38 points and 11 rebounds for Milwaukee.

KINGS 126, RAPTORS 124: Harrison Barnes scored 26 points, De’Aaron Fox added 24 and Sacramento won in Tampa, Florida, for its third straight victory.

Buddy Hield had 22 points and Hassan Whiteside came off the bench with 16 points and nine rebounds for the Kings (8-10) in his second game back after missing four games because of a hip injury. Sacramento shot 55% overall to offset nine fourth-quarter turnovers.

Pascal Siakam scored 32 points for the Raptors (7-12). Fred VanVleet had 26 points and six assists.

HAWKS 116, WIZARDS 100: Atlanta held NBA scoring leader Bradley Beal to a season low in points, and Trae Young’s 41 points helped the Hawks beat visiting Washington in a game in which Atlanta’s Rajon Rondo and Washington’s Russell Westbrook and Robin Lopez all got ejected.

Beal, who was averaging 35.4 points, missed all eight attempts from 3-point range and finished with 26 points, including 13 in the fourth quarter after the result was no longer in the balance.

HORNETS 108, PACERS 105: P.J. Washington had 19 points and nine rebounds as Charlotte won at home.

Terry Rozier added 19 points and Devonte Graham had 14 points and 10 assists as the Hornets bounced back from a 116-106 loss to the Pacers two nights earlier.

KNICKS 102, CAVALIERS 81: Rookie guard Immanuel Quickley scored 25 points off the bench, leading New York to a win at home.

Quickley was one of five players to score in double figures for New York, which snapped a three-game losing streak.


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