The NBA season is on an indefinite hiatus while the league and the entire world grapple with the outbreak of coronavirus.
The NBA was the first domino to fall in the current shutdown of American professional sports. On March 11, Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert tested positive for coronavirus and the NBA was put on pause. Will the 2019-20 NBA season start up again?
Fans can only hope.
The NBA’s reaction to Gobert’s positive diagnosis was to shut down completely without setting a definitive return date. The NHL, NCAA, and MLB followed shortly after. The NFL season doesn’t begin until September and most offseason activities like free agency and the draft can be done remotely.
But the NBA is now in between a rock and a hard place. If they can start playing games again, would they have a shortened finish to the regular season before the playoffs start? Would they just ditch the rest of the regular season and begin an abridged version of the playoffs?
Would they cancel the 2019-20 season entirely? We hope not, but it’s impossible to predict the future at this point.
April 6 Update:
TNT’s Ernie Johnson spoke with NBA commissioner Adam Silver in a one-on-one interview via Periscope.
— NBA Alumni (@NBAalumni) April 6, 2020
Of course, Johnson asked Silver when fans can expect to see NBA basketball again. Unfortunately, Silver wasn’t able to provide much clarity. In fact, he believes that the league will have to sit back and avoid making any crucial decisions in the month of April.
“We should accept that at least for the month of April we won’t be in any position to make any decisions,” Silver told Johnson.
For now, NBA fans are still playing the waiting game.