A whole new ball game in NBA’s bio-bubble
By Reuters Editorial | 30 July 2020
The current NBA season is set to be the longest in basketball history but after 140 days, teams will be back on the court from Thursday. The 22 teams with a shot at the playoffs have been gathered at a bio-secure facility in Orlando for several weeks in preparation. Matthew Larotonda reports.
It’s been four and a half months since the NBA’s players stepped onto court, but the long-awaited season resumption finally begins Thursday (July 30).
And this is may be the most challenging season it has ever faced in 74 years.
Twenty-two of the league’s 30 teams have been gathered for weeks in a bio-secure bubble facility, physically cut off from the world, inside Disney World’s Orlando resort in Florida.
Players including 3-time NBA champion LeBron James will play in front of empty stands to get the season completed.
“People have been asking me how is the bubble? I say it’s 2020. Everything is different and you have to be able to adjust to it. I don’t know as far as if it [will feel] like a home game at Staples Center. It won’t have that feeling. Because our fans just give us so much energy, our fans give us so much support and we want to try to give that back to them on the floor.”
Disney World itself and its many rides remain off limits, but the NBA has attempted to make their time there as comfortable as possible.
Games rooms, barbershops and even a fishing lake have been organized, as players face up to the prospect of potentially three months away from their families.
Utah and New Orleans will be the first of two games to tip-off on Thursday, before the schedule really ramps up with a further six games tomorrow.