If everything goes according to plan for the NBA’s return to play at Disney World in Orlando, Florida, the league’s proposed play-in tournament would tip-off in mid-August.
Monday, the National Basketball Players Association held a conference call, which revealed several dates for the league’s plan to resume the 2019-20 season.
The regular season, which will include approximately eight games for the 22-teams, is scheduled to start on July 31.
According to The Athletic’s Shams Charania, the tentative postseason dates are as follows:
- Aug. 16-17: Play-in tourney
- Aug. 18: First round begins
- Sept. 1: Second round tips off
- Sept. 15: Conference Finals start
- Sept. 30: Finals Game 1
The 2019-20 postseason would’ve tipped off on Sunday, April 18 and end on June 21 had play not been suspended in the second week of March due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Last week, the NBA’s Board of Governors and the Player’s Association approved the proposed plan to restart the season with 22 teams. The Trail Blazers will be one of those teams heading to Orlando’s Disney World Resort.
Portland, New Orleans, Sacramento, San Antonio, Phoenix and Washington – are currently not in the NBA’s 16-team playoff bracket, but will all report to Orlando in addition to the playoff teams.
Each team is set to play eight ‘regular season’ games, (roughly half the number of games they had still slated on their 2019-20 schedules). The Top 7 teams from each conference will automatically qualify for the postseason. In an effort to make it fair to the teams that were not in the playoffs at the time the league was suspended, a "play-in tournament" will be held if needed.
Portland, Sacramento and New Orleans all currently sit three and a half games behind No. 8 Memphis in the West.
Teams will reportedly begin training at their own practice facilities in early July and then hold full training camps in Orlando later in the month.
Be sure to check out the latest Talkin’ Blazers Podcast with hosts NBA Champion Channing Frye and Emmy Award winner Dan Sheldon.