• Today
    July 09

  • 01:23 AM

NBA set to return on July 31

REUTERS,

Added 05 June 2020

nba-logo

The NBA’s Board of Governors approved a plan to restart the suspended season with a tentative July 31 start at Disney World in Florida amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the league said on Thursday.

The plan would see 22 of the NBA’s 30 teams play eight seeding games to determine a 16-team playoff field that would follow the traditional post-season format with four best-of-seven series that would crown a champion no later than October 12.

“While the COVID-19 pandemic presents formidable challenges, we are hopeful of finishing the season in a safe and responsible manner based on strict protocols now being finalised with public health officials and medical experts,” NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said in a news release.

The league said approval from its Board of Governors, which came on the day originally scheduled for the start of the NBA Finals, is the first formal step among the many required to resume the season.

According to ESPN, the vote on the format was 29-1, with the Portland Trail Blazers voting against the proposal.

All games, practices and housing would be at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex which is inside the Orlando resort and has multiple hotels and arenas, and would allow the league to limit outside exposure.

The NBA was the first North American sports league to suspend its season due to the COVID-19 pandemic after one of its players tested positive for the new coronavirus in mid-March with five weeks remaining in the 82-game regular season.

The 22 returning teams would comprise eight from each of the two conferences currently in playoff positions plus the six clubs that are six games or fewer behind the eighth seed in their respective conferences.

At the conclusion of the seeding games, the seven teams in each conference with the best combined records across regular-season games and seeding games would qualify for the playoffs.

A play-in tournament would be used to determine the final playoff seed in each conference if the team with the eighth-best combined record is four games or fewer ahead of the team with the ninth-best combined record in the same conference.

The Minnesota Timberwolves, one of the teams excluded from the NBA’s return-to-play plan because of their record, expressed disappointment at not being able to play more games but said they understood and accepted the decision.

“It is important that we be a good team mate not only to the NBA, but to the other 29 teams to support the efforts to complete this season and prepare for next season in a healthy and safe manner,” the Timberwolves said in a statement.

If everything goes according to plan, the NBA said the 2020-21 season would begin on December 1.

The league also said it plans to hold its 2020 NBA Draft Lottery to determine the order of the first 14 selections on August 25. Lottery teams would comprise the eight clubs that do not participate in the restart and the six that go to Florida but do not qualify for the playoffs.

The NBA Draft, typically held in June, is now scheduled for October 15. (Reuters)

 

JOIN THE DISCUSSION

Dos and Donts


Welcome to our discussion forum here on nationnews.com. We encourage lively debate, but we also urge you to take note of the following:

  • Stay on topic – This helps keep the thread focused on the discussion at hand. If you would like to discuss another topic, look for a relevant article.
  • Be respectful – Meeting differences of opinion with civil discussion encourages multiple perspectives and a positive commenting environment.
  • Do not type in capitals – In addition to being considered “shouting” it is also difficult to read.
  • All comments will be moderated – Given the volume of comments each day, this may take some time. So please be patient.
  • We reserve the right to remove comments – Comments that we find to be abusive, spam, libellous, hateful, off-topic or harassing may be removed.
  • Reproduction of comments – Some of your comments may be reproduced on the website or in our daily newspapers. We will use the handle, not your email address.
  • Do not advertise – Please contact our Advertising Department.
  • Contact our Online Editor if you have questions or concerns.
  • Read our full Commenting Policy and Terms of Use.
comments powered by Disqus

POLL

Should the headquarters of a new regional airline remain in Antigua & Barbuda?

Yes
No

FRONT COVER OF TODAY'S NEWSPAPER

CARTOON

INSTAGRAM