Finalized details about the NBA’s return-to-play plan at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida, continue to come out as we get closer to July. Teams have now been assigned hotels and arrival dates, as well as a schedule for their eight seeding games.
There is still plenty of intrigue to see how it all unfolds, but it feels as though the NBA has put together a comprehensive plan for safely returning to play amid the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
When it comes to the schedule for the eight seeding games, it has been done in such a way where all daily games happen within a certain time frame with a maximum number of games set as well.
According to Shams Charania of The Athletic, the NBA didn’t want to exceed playing seven games each day:
NBA restart schedule notes:
– Maximum seven games per day, tip-offs between 12 p.m. and 9 p.m.
– Three total courts, two for national TV
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) June 26, 2020
With the NBA releasing the full schedule on Friday night, they’ve shown that they’re committed to the rules they’ve set for themselves. In 16 days of seeding games, only three see the maximum seven teams playing, with all tip-offs happening within the scheduled time frame.
For those on Pacific Time, games will tip off between 9 a.m.. and 6 p.m., a pretty major adjustment for basketball fans on the west coast. Luckily, the Los Angeles Lakers never have a tip off earlier than 3 p.m., which occurs on Saturday, Aug. 8.
The earliest nationally televised games for those on the west coast will begin at 10 a.m., which happen on both Saturday’s when the Miami Heat take on the Denver Nuggets on ESPN and the L.A. Clippers go against the Portland Trail Blazers on TNT.
While the NBA likely still needs to figure out the last of the safety details, as well as other things like player guests and on campus movement, it appears they have the basketball side of things set in stone. The format has been decided and now fully scheduled, meaning all that’s left to do is play the games.
Complete Lakers schedule at Walt Disney World
The Lakers and Clippers will help tip off the NBA’s return on July 31 with a matchup scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. The Lakers will then play seeding games against the Toronto Raptors, Utah Jazz, Oklahoma City Thunder, Houston Rockets, Indiana Pacers, Nuggets and Sacramento Kings.
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