RJ Barrett cleared for Knicks return after COVID stint

The Knicks finally are starting to shorten their list of COVID-sidelined players.

RJ Barrett was cleared from the NBA’s health and safety protocols Thursday, one day after Obi Toppin also was cleared to rejoin the team. They were the first two of seven Knicks to be forced to sit out this month due to the pandemic, missing the past five games since Dec. 12.

RJ Barrett has been cleared to return to the Knicks.

The Knicks have not said whether either or both players will be able to play in Thursday’s home game against the Wizards.

Immanuel Quickley, Kevin Knox. Quentin Grimes, Miles McBride and Nerlens Noel remain out for the Knicks, who also announced Wednesday that Derrick Rose will miss at least eight weeks after undergoing ankle surgery.