Schedule Rumors

Shams Charania: Sources: Travel dates for 22 NBA teams to Orlando: – July 7: Nets, Nuggets, Magic, Suns, Jazz, Wizards – July 8: Celtics, Mavericks, Clippers, Grizzlies, Heat, Pelicans, Thunder, Kings – July 9: Rockets, Pacers, Lakers, Bucks, 76ers, Trail Blazers, Spurs, Raptors
Storyline: NBA Schedule
Potential early-entry candidates for the 2020 NBA draft will have until Aug. 17 to declare that they are entering the draft, according to a memo obtained by ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski on Saturday. The new deadline is pending the NBA finalizing an agreement with the players’ union on system rule changes in the collective bargaining agreement related to the resumption of the 2019-20 season. The NBA’s early-entry deadline had been April 26, in anticipation of a June 25 draft, but according to the CBA, players have the ability to make themselves draft eligible by petioning the league in writing “at least sixty (60) days prior.” Pending approval from the National Basketball Players Association, that would shift the early-entry deadline to Aug. 17 given the draft has been postponed to Oct. 16.
2 weeks ago via ESPN
Storyline: Draft Early Entries
At this point, however, nothing has been agreed to. For the league to start the season on Dec. 1, it would need to be signed off on by the NBPA, which hasn’t happened yet, sources said. Both sides remain focused on the myriad issues left to be resolved before the league can begin play at Walt Disney World next month. The idea of shifting the NBA calendar from its current, long-standing schedule of beginning the regular season in October and ending its playoffs in June to going from December until August — and, by extension, avoiding conflicting with the NFL as much as possible — has been something that Hawks CEO Steve Koonin has publicly pushed for, including on a panel at February’s Sloan Analytics Conference that was moderated by ESPN’s Kevin Arnovitz.
There will be up to seven games per day played over roughly three weeks during the August regular season, which the NBA has branded “seeding games,” and it is likely there will be weekday afternoon playoff games during the the first round. Sources say the league will use three different facilities at first to stage games — The Arena, HP Field House and Visa Athletic Center, all at the Wide World of Sports Complex. As things progress, it will be reduced to two sites and then one.

2020-21 NBA season to start on Dec. 1?

Shams Charania: Sources: The NBA informed the Board of Governors of scheduled dates: – Training camp: June 30, July 7 travel to Orlando – 2019-20 season: July 31 – Free agency: Oct. 18 – 2020-21 targets: Nov. 10 training camp, Dec. 1 opening night (can remain fluid)
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The NBA considered restarting the season using a 20-team, group-play format, which could’ve given sub-.500 teams the same chance to advance to the second round as the Nuggets. The team was strongly opposed to such a format, according to multiple league sources, believing that it undermined their success throughout the regular season. All 30 teams were polled in an anonymous GM survey about a potential return-to-play, and the Nuggets voted to go directly to the playoffs, according to two league sources.
Adrian Wojnarowski: Sources: Joining the 16 current playoff teams in Orlando: New Orleans, Portland, Phoenix, Sacramento and San Antonio in the West and Washington in the East. If the 9th seed is more than 4 games behind the 8th, No. 8 makes playoffs; Fewer than 4 games, a play-in tournament.

Adam Silver planning to propose 22-team format to resume season

The NBA is planning to propose a 22-team return to the 2019-20 season in a Board of Governors meeting on Thursday, sources told The Athletic, with the draft lottery and combine expected to be in August. The NBA’s proposal will be based on feedback, collaborative discussions and input from constituents around the league. The NBA’s 22-team format at Orlando’s Disney World would bring the 16 teams currently in a playoff spot, six additional teams, and include a play-in tournament for the eighth seed, sources said. The play-in tournament would work as follows, according to sources: If the ninth seed is more than four games behind the eighth seed, the eighth seed earns the playoff spot; if the ninth seed is four or fewer games behind, then the eighth and ninth seed will enter a play-in tournament that is double-elimination for the eighth seed and single-elimination for ninth. ESPN first reported the league was working on 22-team models.
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Adam Silver informed the Board of Governors on Friday that the league is targeting a July 31 resumption of the season, sources said. The NBA discussed four different competition scenarios with owners: 16 teams advancing directly to the playoffs; 20 teams with stage, Olympic-group style play; 22 teams with games for seeding and a play-in tournament; or 30 teams with 72 regular-season games and a play-in tourney.
Hornets owner Michael Jordan was outspoken on Friday’s call, advocating for player safety and not having players have to return for meaningless games following a four-plus month hiatus, sources said. The Hawks and Bulls ownership groups said on the call that they wanted to return, sources said, but several players and staffers throughout both organizations prefer not to.
Near the end of the NBA’s Board of Governors call on Friday, Oklahoma City Thunder owner Clay Bennett delivered an impassioned soliloquy on why the league and owners needed to consider the competitive and financial plights of smaller market teams that could be left out of the season’s summer resumption in Orlando — and the potential symbolic power of all 30 teams gathering there to play as one united association. As the NBA moves toward a plan of inviting 22 teams re-start a truncated season in late July, sources told ESPN, Bennett spoke of exhausting ways to accommodate non-playoff teams still wanting to play. He wondered: was there a way to safely bring all 30 teams?
Storyline: Season Resuming?
For those teams left out of the playoffs, there has already been dialogue on the possibility of mandatory summer training camps and regional fall leagues of four-to-five teams that could bridge the lengthy gap between seasons, sources told ESPN. Those are ideas many teams consider vital, and there’s an expectation that the NBA will raise possible scenarios such as these with the Players Association, sources said. “The message was something bigger, reminding people that some teams can’t just re-open the doors in nine of 10 months and so easily sell tickets or a sponsorship without having played basketball for that long,” one high-level Eastern Conference official on the call told ESPN.