The Quickly Pushed NBA Start and its Effect at Every Level

The Quickly Pushed NBA Start and its Effect at Every Level

Cole Duffett

This start to the 2020-2021 NBA season has been unprecedented to say the least much like the end of last season because of the COVID-19 pandemic and its lockdowns. The directors of the league and the NBPA (National Basketball Players Association) had decided upon the earlier start to the season in mid-December instead of a later date around mid-January that would have the playoffs end in August.

Because of this rushed decision, teams were not given enough preparation time whether it be training days or preseason games, and rookies and new teammates had a much tougher time adjusting to their new environments to list some of the forefront issues.

However, no matter when the season had
started the troubles with COVID-19 and protocols surrounding it would have became the main issue of focus, and it has become the main issue has more and more players are being forced to quarantine. I believe the COVID-19 restrictions for players are necessary for the season to even be semifunctional, especially for any players that have been deemed a close contact, but some of the rules have placed a burden on anyone on the teams’ lives since they are limited to a certain number of people they can come in contact with. As more and more players are forced to sit out though, games have been forced to be postponed due to certain teams like the Boston Celtics and Miami Heat not even having 8 available players each, which is the right move to postpone but the trend of dwindling players is concerning.

Because of the trend of postponed games and certain teams playing with under 10 players, like the Philadelphia 76ers had with one of the rookies playing nearly 35 out of 48 minutes of the game, I strictly believe that the season itself should postponed. My belief in this has been solidified after that 76ers game and the Celtics/Heat game being postponed because it has been made nearly impossible for a vast majority of teams to have a fighting chance if half their roster is out and their star players by themselves or out as well. An indefinite suspension of the season would be reasonable in my eyes until COVID-19 rates in certain states die down slightly.

As the trend continues throughout this almost makeshift year, more and more NBA executives and players alike will begin to realize how this season could be deemed even more illegitimate than the previous one. The media, the players, nor any NBA team front office holders seem to share my beliefs, and this is what is most troubling to me. More players are becoming fed up with the restrictions and the constant back-to-backs implying long stays in cities, which will ultimately lead to an unhappy NBPA calling for a season suspension.

Although this season was shaping up to be one of the more competitive and fun to watch seasons with more and more teams coming out of the cracks to compete in the standings and blockbuster trades that lined the preseason, the more important issue is overall safety of the league and to stop the spread. While us fans would love to see our favorite teams compete for the O’Brien trophy this July, some things are just bigger than basketball. I firmly believe that the NBA needs to come together as a community and face these COVID-19 related issues head on before they get out of hand and lead to more drastic consequences.