After months of planning and discussions, the 2019-20 regular season is set to return after the NBA and NBPA laid out a plan for 22 teams to head to Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida.
The group include the current 16 teams occupying a postseason spot with playoff hopefuls making up the rest. Each team is slated to play eight regular season games to finalize seeding and, depending on the results, a play-in tournament for the eight seed in each conference could happen.
Once the seeds have been settled, the 2020 NBA Playoffs will begin, with the format remaining the same. The current timeline of events has teams arriving to Disney World either in late June or early July for training camp and will play three exhibition games prior to the season’s restart on either July 30.
The playoffs will then begin, with the latest end date of the season being tentatively Oct. 12.
While the general plan has been set into motion, there have been discussions in the past week initiated by the players about whether or not it is worth bringing the season back in the midst of all the social unrest.
Kyrie Irving led a Zoom conference call that included 80 fellow NBA players, including Los Angeles Lakers teammates Avery Bradley and Dwight Howard. For those who may elect not to report to the Orlando bubble, they must provide notice by June 24, per Shams Charania of The Athletic:
Any player that wishes to exercise this right should notify his team of this election by June 24.
Although Howard said he wants to win a championship, he believes his focus should lie on addressing social matters at present time. Meanwhile, Bradley has reportedly taken on a significant role alongside Irving.
The Lakers reportedly believe Howard will ultimately join them when it comes time to report to Walt Disney World, but are less certain with Bradley.
In order to account for the possibility of players sitting out for social or health reasons, the NBA is expected to open instituted a transaction window that will allow all 30 teams to make roster alterations.
This is more a necessity than anything as this would help teams keep full rosters in the event several members choose to not play — or worse — if a player were to test positive for coronavirus in the bubble.