With the NBA intent on resuming play on July 31 at Disney World, a group of players is questioning whether or not the restart is a good idea, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.
Per Wojnarowski, several dozen players recently participated in a conference call to discuss the matter. The NBA and NBPA are expected to agree on a provision that wouldn’t require players to participate, nor subject them to discipline if they chose to stay home. Players would forfeit a portion of their salary for any games missed.
Additionally, Wojnarowski reports that players with medical issues which could cause them to be excused from going to Orlando would be allowed to get that status confirmed by an independent exam. “Even if the player was told that he’s fit to play, he could still stay home without consequence,” Wojnarowski reports.
Under the current plan, teams would arrive at Disney around July 7 and play an eight-game slate of matchups starting July 31 at the ESPN Wide World Of Sports complex. All teams will stay, practice and play at Disney.
The eight-game slate — it’s unclear if they will be classified as regular season games — will help determine playoff seeding. From there, the league could have a play-in tournament for the final spot in the Eastern Conference and Western Conference post-season fields. The NBA Finals would reportedly stretch into October.
The 22-team plan includes all teams that were holding playoff spots when the season was stopped, plus all other clubs within six games of a berth.
Milwaukee, the Los Angeles Lakers, Boston and reigning NBA champion Toronto had already clinched playoff berths. Now with only eight games remaining for each team, it means that eight other clubs — Miami, Indiana, Philadelphia, the Los Angeles Clippers, Denver, Utah, Oklahoma City and Houston — have post-season spots secured, and Dallas virtually has one as well.
That leaves nine teams vying for three remaining playoff berths. In the East, Brooklyn, Orlando and Washington are in the race for two spots. In the West, Memphis, Portland, New Orleans, Sacramento, San Antonio and Phoenix will jostle for one spot.
If the gap between eighth place and ninth place in either conference is four games or less when the eight-game slate ends, those teams will play off for the No. 8 seed. The team in ninth place would have to go 2-0 in a two-game series to advance.
With files from The Associated Press