We’re not even a month removed from the Los Angeles Lakers winning their 17th championship, but it looks like that won’t stop the NBA from carrying on its tradition of treating us to games on Christmas Day.
Thanks to the coronavirus, the NBA’s 2019-20 season was suspended indefinitely back in March. Eventually, the league was able to correct course and resume play in July, but in order to get its schedule back on track—the season typically begins around Halloween and concludes in June—the NBA is going to have to make some major sacrifices. And by major sacrifices I mean cut its offseason a little short. Like...Emmanuel Lewis short.
From The Athletic:
The National Basketball Players Association is planning to hold a vote on Thursday night or Friday morning regarding the Dec. 22 start format to the 2020-21 season amid the coronavirus pandemic, sources told The Athletic.
The NBPA, led by executive director Michele Roberts, started formal conference calls with players from all 30 teams this week. Players have been holding calls with the NBPA beginning Monday and will go through Thursday morning. Players coming out of several meetings believe a Dec. 22 start is inevitable, sources said.
Should the proposal be approved by players, NBA commissioner Adam Silver and the league’s board of governors would then be expected to follow suit. Which in turn, would lift the league’s moratorium and give the green light for trades and other transactions between teams to begin, per Yahoo.
It’s also important to note that a December 22 start date means that free agency and the 2020 NBA Draft are less than two weeks away, with training camp scheduled to begin on December 1. This clearly puts older teams (like the Lakers) and teams that had lengthy playoff runs (like the Lakers) at a competitive disadvantage going into the 2020-21 season, while teams that have sat around doing nothing but resting and healing from major injuries for the last eight months (like the Golden State Warriors) are primed to unleash unbridled hell upon the rest of the league.
Suffice to say, Danny Green of the Lakers is one of many players who isn’t feeling the NBA’s proposed start date. But with the league trying to bounce back after losing $1.5 billion in revenue last season, do you really think they give a shit about this man’s opinion?
“I think most guys, if they said we start in December, would be like ‘I’m not there.’ You know what I mean?” Green said on The Ringer NBA Show in October. “Bron’s been in the Finals 10 years out of his 17 years, which is unbelievable. Mentally, it’s draining to do that, and to have that quick of a restart [...] I wouldn’t expect to see him there. I wouldn’t expect to see him probably for the first month of the season. He’ll probably be working out with us, probably do some playing, but I just don’t expect guys to want to be there or show up willingly at this moment.”
If you thought load management was a problem before, fans are about to be big mad this upcoming season. So players might want to hurry up and hit Tulum while they can because it sounds like recess is almost over.