It may not be this week, but soon, a plan for the NBA to return in July at Florida’s Disney Sports Complex will be revealed, as the league is currently rapidly gathering information from organizations and health experts about how to proceed. First and foremost, the NBA wants to ensure the safety of each team’s players and staff. And secondly, they need to formulate a plan about how to resume the season? Will there be a modified regular season with all 30 teams? Or perhaps just the top 20 or 24? They could even do an extended playoff, as the NHL has proposed. All of those options are being evaluated this week, but as things stand now, the league is leaning towards more of a modified season with only 20 teams rather than the 30-team format — this, according to Sam Amick of The Athletic.
Sources: The focus of the NBA's Tuesday's call with team presidents was on 20-team scenarios and the playoffs. Nothing firm yet, but momentum seems to be going against a 30-team approach in Orlandohttps://t.co/mSJECnhJHB
— Sam Amick (@sam_amick) May 27, 2020
As far as the league goes, this makes a ton of sense. Because safety is a critical issue, accomodating to ten fewer teams will be much easier. Having 30 organizations in one city could become a mess quickly and ruin the whole thing. Besides, it’s not like any team outside the top 20 has a chance of winning anything. If it were up to me, I’d like the NBA to take a similar approach to the NHL.
Keep 20 teams, 12 are already locked into the playoffs, and the final eight will play in a five-game series to determine the rest of the 16-team field. We will see what the league decides in the coming weeks.
As far as the Hawks goes, this is a bit disappointing. While they were never going to contend for a playoff spot, allowing Clint Capela, who is reportedly feeling much better, a few games to gel with his teammates would mean a lot for next season. It also would have allowed the Hawks to evaluate Skal Labissiere, who becomes a restricted free agent this offseason. Both of these players never appeared for Atlanta this season after being acquired days before the trade deadline. But while it isn’t ideal news for the Hawks, these are minor concerns when looking at the big picture. No matter how it is done, the completion of the 2019-2020 season is a promising thing for everyone.