Following NBA commissioner Adam Silver’s recent announcement that the league suspension over coronavirus concerns will last no fewer than 30 days, speculation emerged regarding the actual length of the hiatus, as well as whether the season will eventually be resumed or outright canceled. Going by Silver’s words, a 30-day suspension could point to the resumption of NBA games by mid-April, but the myriad factors involved in controlling the virus’ spread might make this an overly optimistic scenario. However, as one source opined, there might be a specific deadline for the league to decide whether to end the shutdown or to cancel the rest 2019-20 season entirely.
On Saturday, NBC Sports published a series of tweets from Five Reasons Sports Network, which started with a post on Friday that cited internal sources who believe the NBA plans to play about two to four more regular-season games per team, if and when the 2019-20 campaign resumes. This would be in order to “satisfy TV deals” and fulfill certain clauses in the league’s collective bargaining agreement. The account then added that the “drop dead date” for resuming the season would be August 1, pointing out that the NBA might also consider a shortened postseason, as well as a later starting date for the 2020-21 season.
Despite that possibility, Five Reasons Sports Network stressed that the situation at the moment is “fluid and complicated,” underscoring the prevailing uncertainty surrounding the future of the 2019-20 season.
Adam Silver issued a letter to NBA fans.
"The hiatus will last at least 30 days and we intend to resume the season, if and when it becomes safe for all concerned." pic.twitter.com/S4LW84mQEt
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) March 13, 2020
Commenting on the above rumors, NBC Sports posited that restarting the season on August 1 is “so late” and would almost certainly require shorter playoffs with fewer rounds or fewer games per round, plus an adjusted starting date — and maybe fewer games per team — for the 2020-21 campaign. However, the outlet added that this year’s postseason was shaping up to be a “lucrative” one, given some of the top contenders and their respective superstars, such as the Milwaukee Bucks (Giannis Antetokounmpo), Los Angeles Lakers (LeBron James and Anthony Davis), and Los Angeles Clippers (Paul George and Kawhi Leonard).
“There will be every effort to make [the 2020 playoffs] happen,” NBC Sports concluded.
Although rumors from earlier in the week hinted at the increasing chance of team owners preferring to cancel the 2019-20 season instead of resuming it, other reports have hinted at optimism from other corners. As previously documented by The Inquisitr, the Lakers are reportedly hopeful about the chances of the season’s resumption, despite the possibility of wrapping things up late in the summer.