As COVID-19 continues to spread like wildfire, the state of the NBA season is still under doubt. This pandemic may continue through the summer and the league faces some serious implications if they don’t resume basketball action soon.
While nothing is set in stone, a new update suggests the NBA is getting closer to the idea of continuing the season without fans.
Though news of the coronavirus pandemic has been discouraging, NBA executives still cling to hope of arranging a one-site, fan-less, 16-team playoff and a five-to-seven-game regular-season prelude, according to multiple NBA sources.
“They’re very determined to have a champion,” one industry source said.
The playoffs could be reduced to a slew of best-of-three series across the board. A single-elimination format has been all but ruled out — only under consideration as a last resort.
“Nothing is off the table,” another league official said.
Although the NBA still faces a loss without live fan attendance, they can fulfill their obligation to regional networks if they play out the rest of the season. Additionally, it will give teams/players a chance to tie up loose ends (Championship, MVP, etc.).
Adam Silver and other league executives may also look at this as an opportunity to change the NBA timeline, test a 28-team play-in playoff bracket, and other proposed changes that will significantly alter the current format.
It will be interesting to see how they respond to this situation in the weeks and months to come.