7:32pm: Silver confirmed that the duration of the league’s postponement “will be most likely at least 30 days,” according to an interview during Inside The NBA on TNT. When asked if it was possible that the NBA regular season would not resume at all, Silver noted, “Of course it’s possible. I just don’t know more at this point.”
4:00pm: Although the NBA has yet make a formal announcement on an initial timetable for its hiatus, team owners are encouraging commissioner Adam Silver to re-evaluate the situation after 30 days, sources tell ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski (Twitter link), who says the league is expected to provide an official update soon.
Vincent Goodwill of Yahoo Sports (Twitter link) also hears that the NBA will shut down for 30 days before the suspension is re-assessed. Bruce Arthur of The Toronto Star (Twitter links) was the first to report that preliminary 30-day timeline, stressing that it’s a “minimum” and that the timetable may end up being largely out of the NBA’s control.
A layoff of at least 30 days doesn’t come as a surprise. Mavericks owner Mark Cuban speculated earlier today that it may take at least 60 days for the virus to run its course and for the NBA to consider resuming the 2019/20 season. The Chinese Basketball Association, which suspended its season in late January, is aiming for an early-April return, which would mean a hiatus of over two months.
In the short term, a handful of NBA teams – particularly those who have been in recent contact with affected Jazz players Rudy Gobert and Donovan Mitchell – are self-isolating in order to minimize risk.
In addition to the teams we discussed in that earlier story, the Nuggets and Sixers are among the clubs whose players are being advised to temporarily self-quarantine, per Mike Singer of The Denver Post and Keith Pompey of The Philadelphia Inquirer (Twitter link), respectively. The 76ers are organizing testing for players and some staffers, while the Nuggets have tests available if needed, according to those reports.
Goodwill reports (via Twitter) that some team owners on today’s conference call suggested that every NBA player should be tested for COVID-19 during the suspension. Given how challenging it has been for the average American with symptoms to get tested for the virus, it’s unclear how realistic it is to expect tests right now for hundreds of NBA players without symptoms.