NBA seeding games within the Walt Disney World bubble are unlike anything that has ever been seen before. Even watching on TV provides a unique experience for the fan.
In order to alleviate some of the emptiness in the crowd, the NBA has allowed other players to sit while physically distanced in the stands and watch. It was an option that many took advantage of to watch LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers face the L.A. Clippers.
Some of the players in the crowd for the Lakers’ win over the Clippers included Chris Paul, Carmelo Anthony, Damian Lillard, and C.J. McCollum. The option for players to attend games adds another layer to the AAU feeling that has been described by many within the bubble.
“I think it’s respect,” James said of attending games. “We’re all a brotherhood, and definitely happy to see C.P. and Melo, but looking over there and seeing other guys in our league. C.J. from around my block, Dame and a lot of other guys. I think it’s pretty cool.”
One day after his comments, Lakers teammates Dwight Howard and JaVale McGee were among those to take in the back-and-forth overtime battle between Houston Rockets and Dallas Mavericks, according to Rachel Nichols of ESPN:
Guys who've been through the players' section seating for this Rockets-Mavericks game: Dwight Howard, JaVale McGee, Dennis Schroder, Hamidou Diallo, Jeremy Lamb, Devon Hall, Kevin Hervey.
Lamb has been to multiple games today – he's known for doing the same thing at Summer League https://t.co/SolAFVLGlK
— Rachel Nichols (@Rachel__Nichols) August 1, 2020
The next two months within the bubble are going to be fascinating to monitor from an outside perspective. Watching games where the only fans are other players is something that has never been done before.
And while some of the most interesting stuff may be what’s happening when the cameras are off, it’s still almost like a behind the scenes look to see players attending games.
Frank Vogel won’t restrict how Lakers players spend their time
In a normal NBA season, a typical day for a player is strictly scheduled given that they have so many things to do between traveling, practicing, media and games themselves.
However, Lakers coach Vogel has found no reason to limit what they can do while in the bubble. “There’s a handful of things to do; not really a whole lot to do. I think guys got to have the freedom to chart their day out however they see fit,” Vogel recently said.
“If they want to watch Netflix all day, if that makes them feel good and mentally healthy, watch Netflix all day. If they want to get out and go for a walk or bike ride or sit by the pool, all those things can be healthy as well. Meet a friend from another team that’s in our hotel for lunch or dinner.
“All those type of things are fine to do. Honestly, I think it would be inappropriate to try and carve out their day for them. Just give them as much freedom, because we’re in a restricted environment. I’m just letting them make those choices on their own.”
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