Bulls

NBA's return grows murkier with recent developments in Asian basketball

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USA Today

NBA's return grows murkier with recent developments in Asian basketball

The NBA’s hiatus turns two weeks old on Wednesday, and to this point there remain more questions than answers in regards to when play might resume.

Elsewhere, basketball leagues seem to be gaining more clarity on the ramifications of the COVID-19 pandemic, but not many of the developments have been positive. On Wednesday, Brian Windhorst of ESPN reported the Chinese Basketball Association (CBA hereafter) is pushing back its target re-start date until at least May.

The CBA originally suspended play back in January, and had hoped for a return on April 15 — in fact, there was enough momentum around that date that American players contracted in China had begun traveling back in anticipation.

But according to Windhorst, the return was nixed due to a lack of governmental approval and the recent postponement of the summer Olympics in Tokyo.

This news comes days after the Korean Basketball League (KBL hereafter) of South Korea canceled its season on Monday after approximately a month-long hiatus dating back to Feb. 29. Last week, Japan’s B League re-suspended play after briefly returning to action in “chaotic” fashion.

Organized basketball appearing close to return in China and Japan, specifically, had been a source of hope for those forecasting a mid-spring or early-summer return for the NBA. These developments cast doubt on that — especially given that China and South Korea have been lauded for their mitigation of the novel coronavirus' spread. 

If the CBA does pull off a May return, it would mark four months since initially suspending play. A similar timeline for the NBA would leave us in July before games pick back up, and that’s presuming a ton.

For what it’s worth, those in and around the NBA continue to project optimism about the season at some point resuming. ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne recently reported that “no matter what, [NBA owners and players] want to salvage the season.” Mark Cuban told WFAA8 of Dallas that if the over/under on the NBA returning was set on June 1, he would take the under.

But growing evidence points to this hiatus being far from a resolution, or even a concrete discussion of one.

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SportsTalk Live Podcast: NBA, NHL seem close to return, MLB lurks in distance

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USA TODAY

SportsTalk Live Podcast: NBA, NHL seem close to return, MLB lurks in distance

Laurence Holmes, David Haugh and Jay Cohen join Kap on a Memorial Day edition of SportsTalk Live.

0:00 - It looks like we’re getting closer to the return of team sports. The NBA is in talks to resume its season at Disney World, while the NHLPA approved a 24-team playoff format.

5:00 - MLB and the players continue to negotiate their restart plan.

13:00 - Sam Smith tells a San Francisco radio station the Michael Jordan lied in “The Last Dance” when he said he would have considered returning.

20:00 - The guys share their favorite non-title clinching moments in Chicago sports history.

Listen here or below.

Sports Talk Live Podcast

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Top 'Last Dance' moments to get you through first Sunday without Michael Jordan

Top 'Last Dance' moments to get you through first Sunday without Michael Jordan

So you’re sitting around Sunday night, missing “The Last Dance.” We get it, we wish it was still on too.

To help us all get through this first week without it, we’ve compiled some of our favorite “Last Dance” stories so that we can remember the good times together.

Whether it’s your first time seeing some of these, or just a fun look back, we hope you enjoy.

Recounting the best quotes from “The Last Dance”

We’ve got Jordan, we’ve got Kobe Bryant, we’ve got Dennis Rodman-- and yes we’ve even got some Carmen Electra for you.

Michael Jordan jamming to different songs takes over Twitter

If there was one thing more fun than simply watching “The Last Dance,” it was talking with your friends and family about “The Last Dance.” Some of the after-show interviews with athletes, coaches and pundits added incredible insight. And sometimes a memelord would create something so fun that you couldn’t help but watch and laugh. This is one of those latter moments.

Rod Thorn: Michael Jordan didn’t ask for Isiah Thomas to be left off Dream Team

One of the biggest beefs in basketball has a light shined on it. But after all this time, there are still conflicting reports as to what happened back in 1992.

Did Utah pizza give Michael Jordan food poisoning and was it intentional?

The “flu game” is one of the most iconic performances in Michael Jordan’s career, but now we’ve learned it wasn’t the “flu game” at all! Certainly one of the most intriguing new wrinkles out of all the details we learned across the series.

Scottie Pippen on Jerry Krause: ‘The greatest general manager in the game’

The beef between Pippen and Krause was well documented, especially early in the series. But by the end even Pippen had to give it up for Krause.

Why Scott Burrell appreciated Michael Jordan's harsh leadership style

Arguably the most emotional moment we saw during Jordan’s interviews was when he described his leadership style with his teammates. It’s clear Jordan pushed the Bulls very hard, and it’s easy to see how it could rub some people the wrong way. But not Scott Burrell.

How Bulls helped Scottie Pippen earn millions more on way out of Chicago

After one early episode of “The Last Dance,” many people on social media were incredulous that Pippen’s long-term contract was never renegotiated considering his important contributions to the team. However our K.C. Johnson set the record straight for how the Bulls made things right with Pippen when he was on his way out of town.

Why running it back would not have yielded the Bulls a seventh title in 1998-99

To finish this post off, we’re going back to K.C. Johnson who tells us why the 1998 title would’ve been the last for the Bulls dynasty, no matter if Jordan, Jackson and co. returned, or not.

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