NBA To Extend Deadline To Negotiate Season Schedule

Oct 30, 2020, 1:00 PM | Updated: 1:18 pm
Adam Silver - NBA commissioner...
Commissioner of the National Basketball Association (NBA) Adam Silver speaks during a press conference prior to the preseason game between Houston Rockets and Toronto Raptors at Saitama Super Arena on October 08, 2019 in Saitama, Japan. (Photo by Takashi Aoyama/Getty Images)
(Photo by Takashi Aoyama/Getty Images)

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – The NBA Board of Governors and the league’s Players Association are expected to extend the deadline to negotiate the remaining offseason schedule and the beginning of the 2020-21 NBA season. The original deadline was set for the last Friday of October.

In an appearance on ESPN’s “The Jump” on Thursday, NBA Players Association vice president Malcolm Brogdon said he expected the deadline to extend to next week.

“This is a super-complicated issue, and there’s a lot to balance,” Brogdon said. “[There are] a lot of minds working on this collaboratively, on both sides. So it’s going to take some time.”

Finalizing Offseason Dates

Among the issues that must be sorted out between the league’s owners and players are the remaining dates for the NBA offseason. The NBA Draft is set for November 18, but little beyond that is known.

The league must determine when the free agency period will begin before the regular season schedule can be set. Earlier this month there was a strong push among the league’s owners to have the season begin on December 22 with training camps opening on December 1.

However, Michele Roberts, the executive director of the NBA’s Players Association said players strongly opposed the proposed start date.

“Given all that has to be resolved between now and a Dec. 22 date, factoring that there will be financial risks by a later start date, it defies common sense that it can all be done in time,” Roberts told Shams Charania of The Athletic. “Our players deserve the right to have some runway so that they can plan for a start that soon. The overwhelming response from the players that I have received to this proposal has been negative.”

Estimates from the league indicated postponing the NBA’s opening day after the high profile Christmas showcase could cost owners and players a combined $500 million in revenue.

Early numbers indicate the NBA suffered a 10 percent revenue loss last season due to canceled games and the completion of the season being played without fans in the stands during the league’s postseason in Orlando.

Without fans in the stands during the 2020-21 season, revenue could drop by as much as 40 percent, resulting in the owners push to begin the season sooner rather than later to avoid further losses.

Some of the league’s players have asked to have the season reopen on Martin Luther King Jr. Day on January 18, with free agency opening on December 1. However, eight of the league’s team’s haven’t played competitive basketball since March 11, when Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert tested positive for coronavirus.

Another six teams haven’t played since mid-August when they were eliminated from playoff contention within the NBA bubble. Those playesr and teams may be hungrier to return to the floor than those who competed in the league’s postseason.

League commissioner Adam Silver indicated he’d like to have an agreement between the NBA’s owners and players at least eight weeks before opening day. If an agreement isn’t struck before Halloween, Silver’s eight-week plan wouldn’t coincide with a Christmas Day start date.

On Friday, the league announced it would allow teams to begin hosting players for offseason workouts.

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