The NBA is already starting to prepare for the start of the 2021-22 season as the league announced the dates for the 2021 NBA Draft, NBA Draft Combine and NBA Draft Lottery, which are slated for June and July.
The NBA Draft is set for Thursday, July 29 at 8 p.m. ET. ESPN and ABC will televise the first round of the draft while the second round will be aired only on ESPN.
The combine will take place from Monday, June 21 through Sunday, June 27, but these dates are subject to health and safety conditions with the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Various ESPN channels will provide coverage of the combine, primarily focusing on five-on-five games and strength and agility testing.
The lottery will take place on Tuesday, June 22. ESPN will televise the lottery starting at 8:30 p.m. ET.
The league also announced the deadlines for the early entry player application, which is set for Sunday, May 30 at 11:59 p.m. ET. The deadline for an early entry player to withdraw their name from the draft pool is Monday, July 19 at 5 p.m. ET.
Scheduling the draft for its typical dates in the summer is a sign the league hopes to operate as it usually does as coronavirus (COVID-19) has brought a multitude of challenges.
Last season, the league held the lottery virtually in August while the draft occurred virtually in mid-November. The combine was a mix of in-person events in NBA team markets while many interviews were conducted virtually.
With increased testing capacity and a rising amount of vaccinated individuals, there is optimism that this year’s draft festivities won’t be held in an unconventional format.
Some members of Lakers to receive COVID-19 vaccine
Recently, it was reported that some members of the Los Angeles Lakers would receive the COVID-19 vaccine.
The Lakers would be one of the few teams in the NBA to publicly have members of the franchise receive a dose, and it was reported that they would be offered the one-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine.
Other teams who have publicly stated they’d have members receiving the vaccine are the Portland Trail Blazers, Atlanta Hawks and New Orleans Pelicans.
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