Four potential scenarios the NBA is weighing, including full cancellation
Just keep hope alive.
With recent reports that the NBA is preparing scenarios to cancel the 2019-20 season, it's important to remember that the situation around the coronavirus always evolves and the NBA will only cancel the season as a worst-case scenario.
Lakers forward Jared Dudley tweeted that a decision will not be made before June 1st because there is too much money on the line from canceling the entire postseason and 21% of the regular season, which is what the report says is possible.
However, last month commissioner Adam Silver gave three scenarios on what the NBA could look like coming back, plus we added one that the Blazers' own Damian Lillard would like to see.
Here they are.
Business as usual
"One is -- Of course, when can we restart and operate as we’ve known -- 19,000 fans in buildings, that’s one set of criteria." - Adam Silver
Eventually the NBA wants to return to the way they operated before the coronavirus hit the United States, with packed arenas and interaction between the crowds and players. Now given the state of the pandemic returning to this state of games in time for the 2020 NBA Playoffs may be too unrealistic of a goal.
No fans but the show goes on
"Then option two is – Should we consider starting without fans and what would that mean? Because presumably if you had a group of players and staff around them and you could test them and you could follow some protocol, doctors, health officials may say it’s safe to play…" - Adam Silver
The second option given by the commissioner would see the 2020 postseason go on, albeit postponed, with no fans to salvage the season and take as large of a financial hit as canceling the season would take, which would be upwards of a billion dollars lost reportedly. Recent ideas down this line of thinking include housing all playoff teams in Las Vegas and playing in empty arenas there because that town has the hotels and arenas to house the entirety of the NBA postseason. It would include a short first round series to speed up the timeline which could be a throwback to when the first round was Best-of-5 games.
Not playoff basketball...but still basketball
"The third option that we are looking at now, and I would say all suggestions are welcome, is that… Are there conditions in which a group of players could compete and maybe it’s for a giant fundraiser or just for the good of the people?” - Adam Silver
The final option gave my Silver was the cancelation of the postseason but being able to put on some exhibition games for charity with the players willing to play. This would be the least desired of the three options given preserving the postseason is the league's top priority outside of the players' safety.
But any basketball would be better than no basketball.
What does Dame want?
"When the season does come back, I feel like it’s only right that teams get a chance to make a playoff push, like ourselves, give us a chance to get in. Or, some type of tournament style where it’s fair… It’s obviously gonna be a different situation than it has ever been, so maybe they should do something that has never been done. Or something that is going to make this year very unique like it already has been." - Damian Lillard
In a recent press conference, Trail Blazers superstar Damian Lillard spoke that if the season were to come back he'd want a play-in tournament for the final spots in the West to give his team a chance to compete. When the season got suspended, Portland was 3.5 games out of the final spot in the Western Conference behind Memphis, who had the leagues toughest remaining schedule, and two more games against the Blazers. If Lillard got his way it would almost certainly be apart of the second option in Las Vegas.