Although the 2019-20 NBA season came to a screeching halt due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, the league has been seeking out potential alternatives for a resume to action.
Reports indicate the NBA had been strongly considering holding the rest of the games in a centralized location like Las Vegas. Of course, they will first need to determine a way to ensure player and staff safety in their efforts to take preventative action.
The uncertain nature of a potential solution left owners around the league preparing for a potential lost season. Fortunately, it appears they have since managed to find a silver lining.
According to Sam Amick of the Athletic, there is growing optimism that the NBA will be able to save the season:
Yet despite all the worldwide despair that has come with these past few weeks, with America soaring to the top of the list in both coronavirus cases (633,267, with Spain second at 180,659) and deaths (28,278, with Italy second at 21,067), there’s a reality within NBA circles that is hard to reconcile at the moment. When it comes to the prospect of saving this season in some form, sources say that optimism abounds in the ownership, player, agent and league office ranks.
The report added there may be too much at stake financially for the league to not find a way to complete the 2020 NBA playoffs:
For the NBA, which has approximately 80 percent of its regular season completed and so much financial incentive to cobble together some kind of postseason, the widespread optimism that this will happen remains.
This may come as a bit of a surprise considering there were recently conflicting reports about a growing pessimism for the owners that the season could not be saved. However, it seems the prospect of losing out on all this potential revenue was too big of a risk for the league to not find a temporary solution.
The NBA has done their due diligence on a few potential rapid-response testing systems that would be able to provide results in a matter of minutes. This could very well be the first step in making the Las Vegas idea come to fruition.
Commissioner Adam Silver has already publicly announced that the league will not have a definitive update on the fate of the season until some point in early May. The progress they make in the coming weeks could serve as the deciding factor on whether or not this season will crown a champion.