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The 2020-21 NBA season will not get underway any earlier than December 25, it is being reported.
With this season’s NBA Finals not scheduled to finish until the end of October, there is a concern that some players will not be allowed sufficient downtime to prepare for the new campaign.
The league had previously stated that it would like the new NBA season to begin by December 1 after the coronavirus pandemic meant the 2019-20 season had to be postponed in March.
Action got back underway in July in the bubble at Disney World in Florida, with the Eastern and Western Conference Finals now not far away.
Commissioner Adam Silver said last month that felt a “little bit early” for the new season to begin in early December and it seems that this has now been decided.
According to Shams Charania of The Athletic , the NBA’s league office informed Board of Governors on Thursday that the 2020-21 season won’t begin earlier than Christmas Day.
The NBA has already pushed back the NBA Draft and free agency but a date of November 18 is now being looked at as a revised one.
Pushing the new NBA season back toward the end of November would give players about eight weeks to prepare and rookies a month before games.
There were worries that the current season might not be completed after playoff games were postponed in protest to acts of racial injustice.
When the Milwaukee Bucks didn’t take the court for their playoff game against Orlando amid frustration with the police shooting of Jacob Blake in Wisconsin, other teams followed.
Games were postponed for the next two days before a meeting between owners and players led to an agreement to resume being reached.
Players across the NBA have been adamant that more needs to be done to effect social change and are not afraid to vent their frustrations.
As things stand, it seems that the NBA Finals will be played, but first the Conference Finals will have to play to their conclusion.
In the West it is likely that the Los Angeles Clippers will face off against the Los Angeles Clippers, while the East will see the Miami Heat against either the Boston Celtics or the current champions the Toronto Raptors.
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