Now it really is. And already a touch of controversy Covid-19.
The NBA Board of Governors voted 29-1 on Thursday to regain its season, with training camp starting June 30 and the season reopening on July 31 in a 22-team format in Orlando, Florida, announced the league.
However, on TNT Thursday night, Commissioner Adam Silver was thrilled when he indicated that there could be rules to prevent older coaches from being on the bench at Disney World.
There are three head coaches over the age of 65: Mike D’Antoni of Houston, 69, Alvin Gentry of New Orleans, 65, and Gregg Popovich of San Antonio, 72. Two other head coaches are 60 or more: Rick Carlisle, 60, and Terry Stotts, 62. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention put the highest risk for people over 65.
Because of that, Silver said, “Some older coaches may not be the bench coaches to protect them.”
D’Antoni has said he will definitely be in Orlando training and sounded upset.
“I’m sure they want to keep everyone safe, but to start identifying the people most at risk, well, I hope they don’t want to get into that,” D’Antoni told ESPN.
Gentry told ESPN: “That doesn’t make sense. How can I train like that?
Silver also confirmed that the league would not close “if a single player tested positive,” adding that everyone “will maintain certain social distance protocols.”
“Players will live and stay there during the competition,” said Silver.
In a previous statement, Silver said: “While the COVID-19 pandemic presents formidable challenges, we are hopeful of ending the season safely and responsibly based on strict protocols that are now being finalized with public health officials and experts. doctors. “
The players’ association is expected to approve the decision on Friday, but there is still work to be done to resolve the tests and protocols.
“‘ I’m ready to go, “Mark Cuban, owner of the Mavericks, told The Post. “We have more work to do, because safety will always be our primary focus, but it will be fun to have the guys back on the court.”
The Nets and the other 21 clubs will start a week-long training camp on June 30 and then continue in Orlando after July 7.
The six additional teams beyond the playoff qualifiers based on the March 11 ranking are the Trail Blazers, Pelicans, Kings, Spurs, Suns and Wizards. There are five teams from the west and one from the east, according to the formula of the teams that have to be within six games of a playoff position. It also turned out that those teams have the 22 best records in the league.
The Blazers, ninth in the West, were the only dissenting vote: They pressed for just 20 teams, according to a source.
After eight regular season games called “seed games,” there will be a game event between numbers 8 and 9 at each conference, but only if the ninth seed is within four games of the playoff spot.
The NBA Finals could conclude until Oct. 12, with training camp for the upcoming season not beginning until Nov. 10, according to the league. The season opener for 2020-21 will “probably” be December 1, the NBA said.
The league statement said: “The NBA and NBPA are working with infectious disease specialists, public health experts, and government officials to establish a rigorous program to prevent and mitigate COVID-19 related risk, which includes a protocol for regular testing and strict safety practices. . ”
As previously reported, the Knicks will not be part of the Disney World fun and can embark on a training quest, with Tom Thibodeau marked as the favorite. The Knicks had always been ambivalent about a restart with their final record 21-45. They are seven consecutive seasons outside the playoffs.
The Nets, seventh in the East, will participate in the eight-game regular season that will be followed by a potential play-in series and then the playoffs.
A report indicated that the Finals in 2021 would be in July, to ensure that NBA players are available for the postponed Tokyo Olympics, which will begin later that month.