NBA Confirms 22-Team Plan, Announces Lottery Details

The NBA has officially announced that its Board of Governors voted in favor of commissioner Adam Silver‘s recommendation to resume the season this summer with 22 teams in attendance, issuing a press release to confirm the news and offering several more details.

“The Board’s approval of the restart format is a necessary step toward resuming the NBA season,” said Silver said in a statement. “While the COVID-19 pandemic presents formidable challenges, we are hopeful of finishing the season in a safe and responsible manner based on strict protocols now being finalized with public health officials and medical experts. We also recognize that as we prepare to resume play, our society is reeling from recent tragedies of racial violence and injustice, and we will continue to work closely with our teams and players to use our collective resources and influence to address these issues in very real and concrete ways.”

Here are some of the details announced or confirmed by the league in today’s release:

  • All of the dates we’ve heard within the last week, including a tentative start date of July 31, a draft date of October 15, and a 2020/21 start date of December 1, are accurate.
  • As expected, once the playoffs begin, they’ll follow a traditional format — each series will be a best-of-seven, and the Eastern and Western Conference will be kept separate until the Finals.
  • The draft lottery – rescheduled for August 25 – will be made up of the eight teams not involved in the league’s restart and the six teams that don’t make the postseason. Those teams’ lottery seeds and odds will be based on their records through March 11. So even if the Trail Blazers go 2-6 when play resumes and the Suns go 6-2, passing them in the standings, Phoenix will still have better lottery odds if neither team makes the playoffs.
  • The rest of the draft order will be based on the 16 playoff teams’ combined records across regular season games and “seeding games,” which is what the league is calling the eight games being played this summer. For instance, the Heat (41-24) are currently projected to draft 23rd, but if they go 1-7 when play resumes, they’ll likely move up in the draft.

Additionally, while the NBA didn’t formally confirm these dates, Shams Charania of The Athletic (Twitter links) says the league informed the Board of Governors of the following dates on today’s call:

  • June 15: Players located internationally return to their team’s market.
  • June 21: All players report to their team’s market.
  • June 22: Coronavirus testing begins.
  • June 30: Training camps begin.
  • July 7: Players travel to Orlando.

It’s still not exactly clear what the schedule will look like between July 7-31. There may be some sort of quarantine period for players. Camps figured to be resumed, and Tim Reynolds of The Associated Press reports (via Twitter) that some exhibition games are expected to take place.

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16 thoughts on “NBA Confirms 22-Team Plan, Announces Lottery Details

    • mrshyguy99

      yes they have to wait . they only have 8 non playoff teams with a few who are 3 or less games from a 8th or so spot. so till the playoffs start they dont know who the 14 teams who make up the lottery

  1. mrshyguy99

    i love this idea. makes no sense to play teams that have no playoff shot this late. just play the teams who may or may not make the playoffs. give the playoff teams a few games to warm up and than go to a normal playoffs. i love the move. it the best way to get back to basketball.

    • i hate my father

      NBA really did an excellent job figuring this out. It is going to be fun and going to attract a ton of new viewers.

      • Dodgethis

        No, it isn’t. It’s going to get massive viewership this year, and take a massive hit in the next few years.

  2. Sillivan

    Draft lotto set at august 15

    Regular season ends at August 16?

    It takes time for play in tournament

  3. thatsright

    They should just declare the regular season over and start the playoffs based on the seeding they had when the league shut down. There is no need to play 8 seeding games. Then they can have the draft during training camp before the playoffs start and they can finish the playoffs earlier.

    • L Lawliet

      Why do you still not get it? The players want competative games prior to going into the playoffs.

  4. Sillivan

    Sorry
    Draft lotto date at August 25

    Knicks can make Playoffs if signing free agents and trade future picks

    • I’m thinking that guys tried to stay in shape at least a little bit knowing that there’s talk of continuing a season. I don’t think they all sat around and got fat like I did LOL. In addition, now that we have a date there’s a few weeks to start working on conditioning even before they report. I think the players should be fine, at least my fingers are crossed no injuries happen with this shorter prep time.

  5. greg1

    I don’t think they should just start the playoffs with the 16 teams currently in as thatsright has suggested. Of course viewers will comeback regardless, but having eight teams fight for two spots as the beginning of basketball again will be great to watch.

    Can the Spurs keep their playoff streak alive? Can the Suns break the futility run they’re on? Can Zion or Dame drags their teams into the playoffs? Going to be fun.

    • mrshyguy99

      it only fair to give these teams a chance at the playoffs. they did the right thing by cuttng the teams that have no chance. plus either way i bet players would love warm up games before going into the playoffs. get them back into game shape. after what almost 5 months of no games

  6. x%sure

    Calling RS games “seeding” games lol smh idk omg !?!

    Playing for seeding means losing! That’s their incentive? Don’t call them that! And stop hating on the word “regular”. These days regular sounds pretty good!

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