The National Basketball Players Association has approved the NBA’s plan to resume the 2019-2020 regular season in July with 22 teams present. Shams Charania of The Athletic tweeted the news today.
This was presumably the last hurdle between the league and its desire to reinstate the season on July 31st. The sport has been on hiatus since March due to COVID-19.
As reported yesterday, the plan includes these specifics:
- Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida, is set to be the sole host, providing basketball facilities and resorts to house players
- The 16 current playoff teams are heading to Disney World, along with an additional six teams that trail their conference’s eighth seed by six games or less; those extra invitees are the Blazers, Pelicans, Suns, Kings and Spurs in the West, and the Wizards in the East
- Each of the 22 teams will play eight games in Orlando to wrap up the regular season and determine seeding before the playoffs
- A play-in tournament for the eighth seed will be triggered if the ninth seed in either conference finishes the shortened regular season four games or fewer behind the eighth-seeded team
- If a play-in tournament is necessary, the ninth seed will need to win two straight matchups against the eighth seed to earn a playoff spot; one win by eighth seed will clinch their playoff berth
- Teams will begin to prepare for the season in late June before traveling to Orlando
- Training camp in Orlando is scheduled for July 9-11, ahead of the first games on July 31
- The NBA will have “uniform, daily testing for the coronavirus within the Disney campus environment,” per Wojnarowski
- If a player tests positive for the coronavirus, that player will then be subject to individual quarantine and treatment
Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN added a little detail to the plan to isolate players and others inside the Disney “bubble”.
The NBPA player leadership was informed of a plan to keep 1,600 people in Orlando bubble at any given time, sources tell ESPN. Player families will be allowed to arrive after first-round of playoffs — likely three members at a time.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) June 5, 2020