The NBA goal for the 2020-2021 season is to play up to 82 games in the home market of the host teams, but with less fan attendance.
Only six teams are left inside the bubble. Tomorrow, the Lakers could boot out the Houston Rockets from contention. On the other hand, the Clippers still have to figure out how to close out against the Nuggets.
In the Eastern Conference, the Miami Heat and the Boston Celtics are in for an exciting matchup. Both teams have deep rosters that boast high-quality types of play. While these games are still ongoing, the NBA league office is busy planning for next year.
The concrete steps haven’t been discussed yet. However, the goals have been set, and it will be up to the COVID-19 situation if it will permit these to be achieved.
NBA goal is to play 82 games next season
COVID-19 forced the entire league to be suspended for four months. In other words, players, teams, and stadium action were put on a standstill. No games mean that no revenue flow in the team owners. Based on reports, ticket sales amount up to 40% of the team’s total revenue.
As such, the NBA is justified to set such a high goal for the next season. It wants team owners to be able to bounce back from such a difficult 2019-2020 season. Also, it wants to inch back to normalcy.
Full stadium capacities may not be welcome from the get-go. However, bringing fans back in the arenas will not only be welcome news for team owners, but also to fans.
The NBA front office also would like to play as many games as possible in the home market of the teams. It means that they aren’t planning a bubble. Instead, they are considering doing homestands, similar to Major League Baseball.
Challenges for the next season
Restarting the NBA in the Orlando facility wasn’t an easy feat. It will even be harder next year as 30 teams’ interests will have to be balanced on the scale. In addition, the NBA will also have to manage the health of its players for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.
If the major sporting event pushes through, the NBA will be sure to send only its best players to redeem itself from the FIBA 2019 debacle. As such, the NBA has a thin line to cross from the start all the way up to the 82nd game of the regular season.
They will also have to consider what to do with the 2021-2022 season, considering the delay brought about by this season and the next.
Image from Golden State Warriors/ YouTube thumbnail