The new In-Season Tournament is the latest wrinkle to the NBA, an attempt to make the regular season carry more weight among teams. Similar to when the Play-In Tournament was revealed, it garnered mix opinions, but the Play-In has became a success and time will tell for this new addition.
With load managing and resting key players being an issue through the recent years, this is viewed as an effort to add more competitiveness to the regular season and incentivize players to play more. The In-Season Tournament features Group Play and Knockout Rounds similar to the World Cup, with the Championship taking place at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.
The structure will presumably make more sense as the tournament progresses, but it’ll be intriguing to see how players feel about it when it concludes in December. With Group Play beginning in November, the NBA has unveiled special In-Season Tournament courts for all 30 teams, the Los Angeles Lakers included:
— NBA (@NBA) October 30, 2023
Unveiling new courts may add more mystique to the tournament with the Lakers’ looking similar to the 2010 NBA Finals court with the trophy behind the logo. It is a pretty simplistic design featuring a lot of gold with hints of purple.
L.A. will play its first In-Season Tournament game on Nov. 10 on the road against the Phoenix Suns. The Lakers then host the Memphis Grizzlies at Crypto.com Arena on Nov. 14 before going back on the road against the Portland Trail Blazers on Nov. 17. They then finish Group Play at home against the Utah Jazz on Nov. 21.
It is worth nothing that all these games count towards the regular season record, adding something at stake for the Lakers to compete and win these tournament games. The winning team will take home the NBA Cup as well as $500,000 apiece, making for a decent payday for whatever team wins it all.
Vincent not in favor of In-Season Tournament
One Lakers player has already expressed distaste with the NBA’s new In-Season Tournament is Gabe Vincent, who doesn’t see a point other than earning some extra cash.
While there may be some mixed feelings amongst players, it seems that this In-Season Tournament will be a part of the regular season for the foreseeable future. The NBA is always looking to evolve and expand the game and this is simply a new wrinkle to make the regular season carry more weight for players.
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