As one of the largest and fastest-growing sports leagues in the world, the NBA is always ahead of the game when it comes to attracting more fans to the sport.
A few years ago, they added a play-in tournament as a way to increase the excitement and interest level for lower-seeded playoff teams. They also updated the rule book to implement changes that promote more natural and fluid gameplay.
Now, the league office is apparently working on adding an in-season tournament that could be added to the schedule as soon as the 2023-24 season. NBA Insider Shams Charania recently dropped the details on Twitter.
Current framework of NBA In Season Tournament as soon as 2023-24, per sources:
- Cup games through November
- 8 teams advance to single-elimination Final in December; other 22 continue with regular season
- All games part of normal 82-game schedule; one extra for two Final teams
Adding such a big thing to the NBA calendar will be no easy feat. The league will have to figure out a number of things, ranging from player incentives to how the tournament itself will actually work.
The NBA and NBPA Are Reportedly Actively Engaged On Finalizing An In-Season Tournament For The First Time Ever
According to Charania, both sides are still working to finalize the tournament and are working to iron out the details... like what kind of prizes the winner would receive.
The NBA and NBPA are still working to finalize the In-Season Tournament concept, which includes to-be-determined prizes for the eight teams that advance to the single-elimination round, sources said.
It's hard to say how an in-season tournament will work out for the league. While the NBA is hardly the first sports league to add such an event, it is something that we have never seen before at this level of the game.
For decades, the NBA has followed a pretty routine schedule that involves 82 games and a 4-round playoff bracket. Fans, experts, and players haven't really had much to say about it aside from wanting to eliminate back-to-backs.
Adding a November tournament will change things up in a huge way. For the fans, it means another playoff-style competition that will no doubt bring out the intensity. For the players, it means another chance to earn some rewards for winning.
Of course, for Adam Silver and the NBA office, it could mean a drastic increase in viewership.