As the calendar moves further into May, there is still no definitive answer as to whether or not the NBA will resume the 2019-20 season. There have been discussions – intense discussions – about how and where the NBA season could continue. The bigger issue is when.
How the NBA would return is fairly simple. The league has basically two choices. One, the NBA can continue the remainder of the regular season – each team has approximately 15 games left – or, two, the league returns and goes to the playoffs immediately.
With the amount of money the league is losing, playing those remaining 15 games is important in terms of revenue. It’s even more important for those teams that are out of the playoff race. NBA commissioner Adam Silver has not issued any statements as to which direction the league will go, but it appears that both the league and the players association would like to play the rest of the regular season and then go to the playoffs.
Silver has talked about two possible locations to finish out the 2019-20 season – Las Vegas and Orlando, Florida, at the Disney Resort. In each location, the NBA could set up a sort of “bubble” city that would include all 30 teams, their coaches, and support personnel.
Both Las Vegas and the Walt Disney Resort have the available space to house everyone. Both also have the necessary basketball facilities for teams to practice and play games. There are courts at both locations that lend themselves to broadcasting for television.
The Big Issue
Silver has stated that NBA practice facilities around the country cannot open until at least May 8. There is still no word yet as to whether any of those facilities will open that day or sometime after. Without a clear time frame, it’s hard to speculate when the NBA could get back underway.
One thing is likely – games will resume without fans. For the most part, fans are okay with that. A recent ESPN study found that 65 percent of those surveyed were in favor of sports returning even if fans could not be at games.