Sources: NBA Explores Postseason In Las Vegas, But Still Faces Many Hurdles
The NBA is "exploring the feasibility of holding its entire postseason in Las Vegas," though the league is "nowhere close to formalizing anything," according to sources cited by Chris Mannix of SI.com. However, a source added "nothing is off the table." Several team and league officials said that "any chance of a traditional postseason is out." A source said that quarantining in one location is the "only solution," and Las Vegas is the "only city the NBA is currently giving any kind of serious consideration." But Mannix wrote "even that faces enormous hurdles." Sending 16 teams to Las Vegas "to play games in hollow arenas isn't ideal," but it "could evolve into a fun, one-time event that would bring the game back and, more importantly, get the television revenue flowing" (SI.com, 4/2).
MAXIMIZE ENTERTAINMENT: In Philadelphia, David Murphy writes the objective for the NBA's postseason "should be three-fold." First is "maximize the television-view audience of every game by maximizing its stakes," and second is "maximize the number of elite-versus elite matchups." Lastly, the NBA "should not feel compelled to re-create what can't be re-created." The objective "should not be to crown a champion that counts itself among those from previous seasons." Rather, it should be to "provide the maximum amount of television entertainment for the viewer, and thus, the maximum amount of value for the rights-holder, while enabling history to regard 2020 as the anomaly that it was" (PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER, 4/3).
10 GAMES, 20 DAYS? In Boston, Gary Washburn writes the best answer for the postseason is "for the NBA to play 10 games over a 20-day period." The league "wishfully would allow the teams to begin practice by July 1, giving each team 10 days to work out before traveling to Las Vegas." The remaining 21 days in July "would consist of playing regular-season games." The league "will have to determine whether teams will be allowed to play each other twice or whether they want to create marquee matchups for television." The NBA has enough networks -- NBA TV, ESPN, TNT, Fox and ABC -- to "carry games and local networks such as NBC Sports Boston can carry the Celtics' remaining schedule as a means of making up for lost games" (BOSTON GLOBE, 4/3). YAHOO SPORTS takes a look at the NBA's postseason scenarios under the header, "How The NBA Can Salvage 2019-20 If The Coronavirus Pandemic Delays The Season Into July" (SPORTS.YAHOO.com, 4/2).