Skip navigation
Sign up to follow your favorites on all your devices.
Sign up

NBA trainer on next season: ‘This is the bubble times three or four or five’

Lakers star Anthony Davis

ORLANDO, FL - SEPTEMBER 26: Anthony Davis #3 of the Los Angeles Lakers stretches before Game Five of the Western Conference Finals of the NBA Playoffs on September 26, 2020 at AdventHealth Arena in Orlando, Florida. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2020 NBAE (Photo by Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images)

NBAE via Getty Images

Following an unprecedentedly long in-season stoppage due to the coronavirus pandemic, NBA trainers mostly successfully handled the massive challenge of preparing players to return to play.

Now, they must do it again.

The NBA is set to begin next season Dec. 22. Teams will have both historically short and historically long offseasons.

Baxter Holmes of ESPN:

“It’s going to be especially challenging to not only get ready to play Dec. 22 or whatever but to maintain that for a period of four or five months,” said one head athletic trainer of a Western Conference team, who, like others, spoke on the condition of anonymity.

“This is going to be another period of unchartered territory. As unchartered as the [Orlando] bubble was [this summer], this is the bubble times three or four or five [because we’re] trying to extend it to that period of time with a minimal ramp-up.”

Players can more easily rest during the regular season than in the bubble, which quickly advanced to the playoffs.

But because it’s a shorter regular season, each game matters more. Plus, it appears there will be travel. At least the bubble was in a single location.

Considering everything, are players more susceptible to injury than usual next season? That’s the risk.

The reward? Money. Lots of money.