The NBA Plan to Restart Season Has Been Unanimously Approved by the Players Association

The players unanimously voted to approve the plan to restart the season at Disney World

NBA NBPA Chris Paul
Chris Paul brings the ball up court during the game against the Boston Celtics on March 08, 2020.
Omar Rawlings/Getty Images
By Luis Paez-Pumar / June 6, 2020 12:15 pm

One of the final hurdles towards restarting the NBA season has been cleared, courtesy of the National Basketball Players Association. One day after league owners approved the plan to return to action by a vote of 29-1, the NBPA team reps unanimously approved the plan on Friday, clearing the way for the first pro basketball in the United States since the coronavirus pandemic hit in March.

The plan details protocol for a restarted 22-team season at Orlando’s Walt Disney World complex, detailing everything from coronavirus testing procedures (nightly swab tests) to how many people teams can travel with to Florida. That number is 35 to start, with families being allowed to replace teams that get eliminated from the post-season; like the players, any family members that travel to Orlando will be quarantined for the duration of their stay.

The 22-team plan was a sticking point in negotiations, but was finally settled on this week. It will include the 16 teams that currently would qualify for the playoffs, as well as the New Orleans Pelicans, Portland Trail Blazers, Sacramento Kings, San Antonio Spurs, Phoenix Suns and Washington Wizards.

As detailed by CBS Sports, those 22 teams will play an eight-game regular season, and then the lowest-ranked teams will have a play-in tournament for the eighth seed in each conference, if certain criteria are met. The 9th seed will have to be within four games of the 8th seed to trigger the play-in tournament, and then will have to beat the 8th seed twice in a row to qualify for the normal, best-of-seven playoffs.

As of now, the plan isn’t completely official, though the NBA is targeting July 31st as the date for the return of basketball. If it does start then, the league already has plans to move off-season events, such as the Draft Lottery and the Draft itself, further down the line.

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Read the full story at CBS Sports

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