NBA: Exploring one way the season could be salvaged after the suspension

NBA Finals trophy (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
NBA Finals trophy (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images) /

Exploring one way the NBA season could be salvaged after the 30-day suspension, assuming it is safe to resume play at that time.

The 2019-20 NBA season is currently suspended with no clear timeline of when normal activity will resume. What we do know, however, is that the suspension is expected to last at least 30 days, as NBA Commissioner Adam Silver clarified Thursday night on TNT.

With the threat of COVID-19 quickly rising in the United States, the NBA, along with many of the other major sports, will close its operations at the minimum for the next few weeks.

While we don’t know for certain when and if the NBA will return, but for the sake of this article let’s assume that the league is ready to pick up play after this initial 30-day suspension.

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After 30 days, the NBA could find locations unaffected by COVID-19 with multiple arenas and resume play in a brief format. The league could use the top 8 in both conferences right now or the top 16 overall and form the playoffs from there.

Limiting travel would be key here and choosing one secure location to play out the entire playoffs and NBA Finals is one logical way to keep everyone healthy in a safe, (and mostly) controlled environment.

This could mean setting up a quarantined area in which only essential NBA employees, staff, and players are allowed in. They would be secluded to certain hotels and arenas.

This could be a college campus as many are in close proximity to each other. College campuses have everything needed to fulfill this idea. Dorms to sleep in, training facilities, cafeterias to eat and medical staff and many have multiple arena-like buildings.

Once we have established an isolated area, we would test all the players and staff and bring them to this location. While also testing continuously everyone who is involved and staying in the location.

We would have mini-playoffs in the selected arenas with no fans and essentially no homecourt advantage.

We could limit the series to best-of-3 in the first round, then best-of-5 for the second round.  Finally, we would expand to a best-of-7 for Conference and NBA Finals.

Obviously, there are many drawbacks to this idea. One, basically isolating players/staff from their families and the outside world for weeks. Another would not only be finding an area unaffected by this but also with multiple hotels and arenas or a campus willing to let the NBA take it over for 6-8 weeks.

One of the last hurdles is a possible public relations blow, as sports are really just entertainment so risking people’s health (even if it is just a small risk) for money might not sit well with many.

Next. NBA: Adam Silver says suspension will be ‘at least 30 days’. dark

To try and play the season in a month might not even work. As this virus spreads so does the timeline for it to disappear. No one really knows how this will all look in 30 days. Hopefully, though, it begins to get better and not worse. And, in the process, the NBA can help the country get back to a sense of normalcy in the not-too-distant future.

For more information about COVID-19, visit the CDC’s website or the website for your state’s Department of Health.