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Breaking Angles: The NBA is Back

The first domino in US professional sports has fallen. The NBA is set to return in July.

Breaking Angles: The NBA is Back

Estimated Reading Time: 2 Minutes

Amidst the turmoil in America right now, we get a WojBomb from the skies. The NBA season and eventual playoffs appear imminent!

It looks like we’re seeing the development of the first REAL plan to bring professional sports back during the COVID crisis. Let’s breakdown what this means.

Play-in for the 8 Seed

We saw a couple of iterations of how play-off seeding would work. Teams feeling it was “unfair” for them to be eliminated before the season was actually over will get their shot at the playoffs. Based on the standings, it looks like the following teams will be invited to Orlando:

  • Eastern Conference
    • Milwaukee
    • Toronto
    • Boston
    • Miami
    • Indiana
    • Philly
    • Brooklyn
    • Orlando
    • Washington
  • Western Conference
    • LA Lakers
    • LA Clippers
    • Denver
    • Utah
    • Oklahoma City
    • Houston
    • Dallas
    • Memphis
    • Portland
    • New Orleans
    • Sacramento
    • San Antonio
    • Phoenix

Candidly, it feels like some of these teams will have close to NO chance to make the playoffs, as both Washington and Phoenix sit over 5.5 games back with 8 games to play. It’s surprising they’re willing to come back and compete with the chips stacked against them, given the potential risk of exposure.

Despite the rumors, the NBA will maintain the traditional two conference format. While it would have been a good trial run for something many have been clamoring over for years, it may have been too drastic a change for players/coaches to stomach.

When Will We See Basketball Again?

July 31st, baby. Mark it on your calendars.

Given the mid-October tourney end date, it’s hard to imagine that we’ll see the 2020/21 season start on time but that’s a bridge they’ll cross down the road. But questions remain:

Will all the stars return?

How will they manage COVID if a player tests positive?

Are they playing at Disney World?

How do they compensate for “home-court advantage” in the playoffs?

How will players use their platform to address the civil unrest in America?

Over the next 24 hours, more news will inevitably break that will shed light on the situation. For now, let’s all bask in the glory of the return of American professional sports.

Ryan grew up outside of Boston in Waltham, MA watching the Pats, Celtics, Sox and Bruins. Despite now living in the vastly inferior sports city of NYC, he remains a die-hard Boston sports fan and is often "that guy" in the bar ridiculing NY sports. Ryan works in tech and is the Co-Founder and President of the recently incorporated Emergent TheaterWorks in NYC, a non-profit theater company focused on producing new and underdone works.

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