Last month we reported that the NBA was looking to restart its 2019-2020 season, and was in talks with Walt Disney World to host the games at its ESPN Wide World of Sports complex (WWoS).
This week, the NBA Board of Governors today approved a competitive format to restart the 2019-20 season with 22 teams returning to play and a tentative start date of Friday, July 31.
The 22 returning teams would be the 16 teams (eight per conference) in current playoff positions, plus the six teams that are currently six games or fewer behind the eighth seed in their respective conferences.
The Orlando Magic would be one of those 22 teams, along with the Milwaukee Bucks, Toronto Raptors, Boston Celtics, Miami Heat, Indiana Pacers, Philadelphia 76ers, Brooklyn Nets, and Washington Wizards from the Eastern Conference; and the Los Angeles Lakers, LA Clippers, Denver Nuggets, Utah Jazz, Oklahoma City Thunder, Houston Rockets, Dallas Mavericks, Memphis Grizzlies, Portland Trail Blazers, New Orleans Pelicans, Sacramento Kings, San Antonio Spurs and Phoenix Suns from the Western Conference.
Each returning team would play eight seeding games, as selected from its remaining regular-season matchups. At the conclusion of the seeding games, the seven teams in each conference with the best combined records across regular-season games and seeding games would qualify for the playoffs.
The 2019-20 season would conclude with a traditional playoff format with best-of-seven series.
The Board’s approval is the first formal step among many required to resume the season.
The NBA has to get approval for the restart plan with the National Basketball Players Association.
The season restart is also contingent on an agreement to use Walt Disney World Resort as a single site for a campus for all games, practices and housing for the remainder of the season. But as mentioned last month, Disney is definitely on board, and awaiting details.
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