NBA Forges Ahead But Moves Cautiously

The NBA is moving full speed ahead with its plan for the resumption of the 2019-20 season, with games slated to begin July 30th. But despite a firm plan in place to restart the season, there remains no guarantee a champion will be crowned in October. 

Commissioner Adam Silver recognized the potential for another COVID-19 shutdown on Tuesday. 

"Certainly if cases are isolated, that's one thing. A lot of the determination will be our understanding of how our community became infected," Silver said during an appearance on TIME 100 Talks. "That will be part of our judgment in terms of whether we should continue. But certainly if we had a lot of cases, we are going to stop. You cannot run from this virus."

Silver acknowledged the possibility of COVID-19 spreading inside the NBA's quarantined site in Orlando, but the commissioner believes the league's plan should go smoothly. Silver noted the NBA's use of an extended bubble could be "a model for how other industries can ultimately open."

"I am absolutely convinced that [the 2019-20 season] will be safer on this campus than off this campus because there aren't many situations that I am aware of where there is mass testing of asymptomatic employees "Silver said. In some ways, this is maybe a model for how other industries can ultimately open. But I am only going to say we will be responsible and watch what is happening, but the biggest indicator will be if we begin to see a spread in our community."

The NBA has been hit by a stream of positive COVID-19 tests in recent weeks as the league looks to resume games. Nets center DeAndre Jordan and guard
Spencer Dinwiddie recently tested positive for COVID-19, as did Nuggets center Nikola Jokic.

The 2019-20 season is set to resume on July 30 at ESPN's World Wide of Sports complex in Orlando. The playoff will begin on August 18th with Game 7 of the 2020 Finals held no later than October 12th.

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