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Report: NBA nearing call to continue schedule, without fans in attendance

NBA comissioner Adam Silver

CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - FEBRUARY 15: NBA Commissioner Adam Silver speaks to the media during a press conference at the United Center on February 15, 2020 in Chicago, Illinois. 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. (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)

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The NBA clearly can’t continue with fans attending games amid the coronavirus outbreak. So, the league has two options:

  • Continuing to play games, but without fans in attendance
  • Implementing a hiatus

Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN:

This works until a single person close to a team – player, coach, trainer – tests positive for the coronavirus. The entire team would seemingly have to quarantine. Its recent opponents would seemingly have to quarantine. A hiatus would likely be put in place. The NBA’s reputation would suffer.

Maybe the NBA can avoid that outcome. But it’s a roll of the dice.

Of course, a hiatus would bring its own complications – mainly, when and where to play games when the season resumes. Those rescheduled games might not be at ideal times for attendance and TV viewership. At least games now occur during prime time or other desirable slots.

The coronavirus obviously presents a rapidly changing situation. Conditions and plans could change. But at this point, it’d be surprising if Adam Silver doesn’t announce tomorrow that games will continue without fans in attendance.