The NBA and NBPA have finalized a deal to restart the NBA Season at Walt Disney World in July. Both the league and Resort made the announcement official on Friday afternoon in a statement on the National Basketball Players Association website and the Disney Parks website. The league’s commissioner Adam Silver sounded very excited to be getting the ball rolling again next month. Many had begun to doubt the feasibility of the NBA’s “bubble plan” as coronavirus cases started to spike in Florida. But, it seems that both the league and its players have come to an agreement to pursue a few regular-season games and get the NBA Playoffs this year. This comes as other leagues like the MLB and NHL have chosen to restart their seasons as well.
“We have worked together with the Players Association to establish a restart plan that prioritizes health and safety, preserves competitive fairness and provides a platform to address social justice issues,” NBA Commissioner Adam Silver explained. “We are grateful to our longtime collaborator Disney for its role in playing host and making this return to play possible, and we also thank the public health officials and infectious disease specialists who helped guide the creation of comprehensive medical protocols and protections.”
We are excited to share that the @NBA 🏀 officially announced today it will finish its 2019-2020 season at @WaltDisneyWorld Resort. The regular season will resume July 30th at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex. Read more on the blog: https://t.co/RjflltdKfr pic.twitter.com/kQLnMqpOTq— Disney Parks (@DisneyParks) June 26, 2020
Among the players, there was some doubt about the validity of the NBA’s safety claims. Both the league and Disney have assured all parties involved that safety will be the most prominent feature of the season’s restart.
“It is very exciting to officially announce the restart of the 2019-2020 season,” added NBPA Executive Director Michele Roberts. “It has taken true collaboration between the League and the Union – special kudos to our Executive Committee and several other team reps – along with the continued support and assistance from medical experts, public health officials and many others. Additionally, our platform in Orlando presents a unique opportunity to extend the ongoing fight against systemic racism and police brutality in this country. We will continue to work with our players and the League to develop specific plans in Orlando as well as long-term initiatives to bring about real change on these issues.”
Will you be watching the league’s restart at Disney World? Let us know in the comments!