The NBA "bubble" in Orlando is unlike anything players have experienced since entering the league.
Just ask the players themselves.
Players from 22 NBA teams are all sequestered on the campus of Walt Disney World, where they'll play eight "seeding" games before 16 clubs square off in a high-stakes postseason.
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That setup is a far cry from typical NBA life, in which teams make brief pit stops in other cities and hardly ever see their opponents outside the area.
In an interview with Bleacher Report's Taylor Rooks, Boston Celtics guard Kemba Walker highlighted the novelty of "bubble" life by describing a random encounter he and Jayson Tatum had with Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James.
Kemba Walker speaks on the experience being around players like Bron in the NBA bubble. @TaylorRooks pic.twitter.com/ccFMdvsS3g— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) July 16, 2020
"Whenever you go downstairs, you're going to see somebody," Walker told Rooks. "Like, the other night, me and JT were walking to get some food and we saw 'Bron. We saw 'Bron, J.R. (Smith), Jared Dudley and (Kyle) Kuz(ma).
"It's very rare to see 'Bron walking by himself and being comfortable. Like, I was telling somebody that he probably hasn't done that since he was nine years old: being able to be so comfortable just walking around and not worrying about people coming up to him and being bothered asking for something.
"Now he's just regular, you know? Not regular, but he's able to be comfortable and walk around comfortably, so I think that's pretty cool."
Walker makes a good point: The NBA bubble is restricted to players, coaches, team staffers and a handful of reporters, so the league's stars can roam free without being swarmed by fans or curious passersby.
And as Walker observed, you're just as likely to see a superstar like James strolling the Disney campus as you are a backup like Dudley.
In that sense, the NBA bubble creates a level playing field where everyone shares the same off-court experience. How players adapt to that unique experience and make the most of "bubble life" may go a long way in determining which teams make the deepest postseason runs.
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