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The NBA Has A Backup Plan For Christmas Day Games Amid COVID-19 Outbreak

Adam Silver

Christmas Day is one of the NBA's most important times of the year. With viewership potential at its peak, the league usually reserves Christmas games for the best and most interesting teams.

This season, that hasn't changed. For over 12 hours, the NBA will have a large slate of games going that includes the Warriors, Lakers, Suns, and Nets.

Unfortunately, COVID-19 has compromised the value of much of those games, as multiple players around the association are out due to health and safety protocols.

Reportedly, league commissioner Adam Silver has developed a backup plan in the event that a game gets postponed.

(via ESPN)

The 10 NBA teams with games scheduled on Christmas were told by the league Tuesday that shifting some game times is a possibility for the planned five-game slate if virus-related issues force changes to the lineup.

The league told the teams the priority is filling the ABC windows for Saturday’s games, which means the slots at 2:30 p.m., 5 p.m. and 8 p.m. Eastern.

The league called the notion of shifting game times -- which might happen if a game is postponed -- a contingency plan in the memo distributed to the teams involved and obtained by ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski. Decisions on whether shifting times is needed could come as late as Friday. Any decisions made on Saturday to postpone a Christmas game would not impact the remainder of the day's schedule, the league said.

Only 7 games have been postponed so far, and none of them were scheduled any later than Wednesday. So, there is hope that Christmas Day will be able to proceed without a hiccup.

As for the rest of the season, there is no plan to pause play at this moment in time -- but that could change if the situation gets worse.

The hope is that, at the very least, the worst of it will come after Christmas Day.