Vegas Remains Most Likely Host For Potential NBA Postseason

Following up on a CNBC report from last week that suggested the NBA is mulling the idea of playing games in Las Vegas if the 2019/20 season is resumed, Chris Mannix of confirms the league is exploring the viability of holding its entire postseason in Vegas.

As we noted last week and as Mannix reiterates in today’s article, Vegas makes the most sense as a neutral site because the NBA has an existing relationship with the city, which hosts Summer League games at the Thomas & Mack Center and Cox Pavilion each July. And a single, neutral site may be the only realistic way to complete the playoffs, since travel restrictions may vary in different parts of the country and games would almost certainly have to be played behind closed doors anyway.

Another recent report indicated that the NBA has had internal discussions about locales such as Orlando, Atlantic City, Hawaii, or Louisville hosting games. However, according to Mannix, Vegas is currently the only city receiving “serious” consideration from the league.

Unsurprisingly, several team and league officials who spoke to Mannix confirmed there’s no chance of a traditional postseason happening this summer, so the NBA is getting creative as it considers its options. Still, it’s unclear if holding the playoffs in a single city would be doable either, since thousands of support staffers would be required at hotels and arenas. As Mannix writes, it’s probably not a viable solution unless the COVID-19 situation improves significantly in the coming months and rapid tests become widely available.

“We all want to play,” one executive from a playoff team told Mannix. “But we all know we can’t play until things are dramatically different.”

Meanwhile, the NBA will have to figure out how a resumed season might impact the 2020 draft, which is currently scheduled for June 25. The league’s preference would almost certainly be to postpone the event until after the conclusion of the resumed season, since offseason rules apply to the draft for roster and trade purposes.

However, as Ian Begley of explains, player agents are concerned about the idea of delaying the draft beyond July. If the draft ends up being pushed to August or September, the early-entrant decision deadline would likely be postponed along with it, causing it to bump up against the start of the fall semester, which would create major complications for prospects and college coaches alike.

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16 thoughts on “Vegas Remains Most Likely Host For Potential NBA Postseason

  1. phenomenalajs

    If they do anything while trying to keep the draft date close to what it is, the regular season will need to be declared over now and they will need to come up with some playoff format that limits the amount of people that come into contact with each other. I don’t know how you can have 16 17-man rosters with full coaching staffs, referees, media, security and other facility personnel at one neutral site for a full playoff schedule while complying with CDC guidelines.

    • illowa

      Every thought is on the table now. Think outside the box and lets have fun with this. Hold the draft as is with the current standings regardless of playoff outcome. Hold the playoffs with best of three all the way thru in vegas baby and into september then start up the next season in december.

  2. thegutsscrambler

    I wouldn’t mind a 32 team single elimination tournament. 5 rounds, both sides of the tournament compete alternate days, with a two day break before the final game. Can be done in two weeks, would be a fun change of pace, and would limit viral transmission. I know, I know, it’s not how’s it’s done, but for some exciting basketball, it might be cool just this once.

    • phenomenalajs

      I get what you mean. With 30 teams, the top team in each conference would get a first round bye. I highly doubt that would happen, though they have discussed a mid-season tournament before. They probably would do a reduced regular playoff format with each series being best of 3.

      • thegutsscrambler

        Shit, it is 30 teams isn’t it. But like you said give the leaders a bye.

    • jeremy

      idk about all that because some teams work hard it wouldnt be fair to have the bad teams play. 20 team tourament sure . all 32 teams that a little too much

      • thegutsscrambler

        I know what you’re saying but I’m not saying this would be a regular thing, just a reason for the fans of every team to have one last go at this season. One more hope, and if a shit team takes out the Bucks or Lakers the first round, then so be it, it’s fan service during a trying time. Can you imagine the hype a team like the Cavs or Knicks would create if they made it a round or two in.

    • I love the idea of a Sweet 16 style single elimination tournament. It would be great to see a game 7 style atmosphere every night. Plus, the first round of the NBA playoffs is normally pointless. Wouldn’t it be fun to see the Magic upset the Bucks in the first round? Or Dallas getting hot and going to Finals?

      Alas, I sincerely doubt the season will continue. :(

      On a semi-related note, I wish they would come to a decision. I am not too thrilled with the Pacers holding onto my money for games we know won’t get played.

  3. goldenmisfit

    Funny thing about this Las Vegas would be saving the NBA but the commissioner never considers Las Vegas as a city for an expansion team.

    • jeremy

      maybe after the mess i heard happen after the all the star game they had years ago a reason vegas doesnt get a team

      • mgomrjsurf

        Also Summer League last year problem.
        KC would be another option because has Sprint Center,Hy-Vee arena,Sliverstar Arena and so on.

    • bowserhound

      The Raiders and Golden Knights will change that sooner than later. Will most likely relocate the team that’s city is under water first; Miami or New Orleans.

    • x%sure

      Many cities could do this. That LV is the only one getting considered is the bigger issue. LV already got an NFL team & thats a lot for a smaller city. Seattle is first.

      • The most logical expansion to me is to add Seattle and Las Vegas. Then move two of either Minnesota, Memphis, or New Orleans to the East.

  4. NBA should just do one big March Madness style tourney when they open things back up in the summer. Have the non playoff teams face each other in play in games. Then do a double elimination tourney.

  5. signal_lost

    Cool to see what everyone can dream up. Here’s my try. Take the top 16 teams as is to 4 locations, each location will have 4 teams. At each location conduct a round robin tournament among the 4 teams where, after playing the three game tournament, the top 2 play a final qualifying game to fill one of the final 4 slots. Once all the locations have filled their final 4 slots, play two best of 5 or best of 7 series. This would be equivalent to a conference finals. Then play the finals. This way there would never be more than 4 teams at a location and the tournament could take around 4 weeks to finish.

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