While ESPN is reporting that a Christmas Day start date or around then is being considered in a shortened season for the 2020-21 NBA campaign, Shams Charania of The Athletic is now reporting that the league is targeting a Dec. 22 start date with a 72-game season. The new proposed date would mean the league is going against its initial plans of starting the season later in the year in order to allow fans to attend games.
The NBA and its board of governors reportedly met Friday to discuss, in depth, the start of the 2020-21 season, per ESPN.
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With 10 fewer games than a typical regular season, it seems the NBA could also experiment with in-season tournaments or the possibility of yet another ‘play-in’ tournament to determine the No. 8 seed for the playoffs in each conference. The NBA restart’s ‘play-in’ tourney was a success during the NBA restart and the league may look to implement that once again.
Just last month, NBA commissioner Adam Silver said in a CNN interview, "The goal for us next season is to play a standard season, 82-game season and playoffs. In home arenas, in front of fans."
But, with the COVID-19 pandemic, schedules and plans remain extremely fluid.
The 2020-21 NBA All-Star game could be on the chopping block, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.
Per ESPN, it also sounds like the league and the NBPA has agreed on Oct. 30 as the deadline to complete ongoing discussions about the collective bargaining agreement for the 2020-21 season.
Could official word on the start of the upcoming season follow shortly?