COVID-19 treatments are a must.
National Basketball Association Commissioner Adam Silver had an interesting comment about the 2020-2021 season and if the league would start the season on December 1st as originally projected. Silver’s response? The target date is “feeling a bit early for me.” The NBA paused the 2019-2020 season in mid-March because of the COVID-19 pandemic after two Utah Jazz players tested positive for the illness. The league came up with a bubble plan to salvage the season and conduct a playoff in order to get television revenue. When the league shut down, the bulk of the season had been played. Because there were customers in the buildings buying seats and items from the concessions stands and using in venue restaurants and paying for parking, revenues were not a crucial issue. All of that might not be available in all of the NBA markets in December. The United States still has not contained the COVID-19 outbreak. Progress has to be made in the next 100 days for the NBA to open the arena doors and allow customers into the buildings along with keeping the players, coaches and staff healthy. The NBA cannot live in a bubble forever.
Silver seems to acknowledge all of the dynamics that need to be worked out if the NBA can return to pre-March business status. “Our number one goal is to get fans back in our arenas. My sense is, in working with the Player’s Association, if we could push back even a little longer and increase the likelihood of having fans in areas, that’s what we would be targeting.” There is no real calendar for Silver to follow. There was a hope that the league could get off-season business started around October 18th but so much has to go right with COVID-19 treatments for that to happen. The 2020-2021 season is on hold.