The NBA and the NBPA have agreed to put in place an enhanced insurance plan for players in Orlando, reports ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski (via Twitter).
According to Wojnarowski, the plan would cover career-ending injuries suffered this summer, whether they’re conventional basketball injuries or somehow related to COVID-19. The potential group policy would cover players for “several million dollars,” Woj adds.
There’s a belief among players that they’ll be at greater risk of injury this summer due to a lengthy hiatus and their limited access to basketball facilities during that layoff.
Players will get a training camp period and will have the opportunity to play a series of intersquad scrimmages in Orlando before the seeding game begin. However, the ramping-up period will look different than a typical fall training camp, as many teams will immediately have to fight for their playoff lives once games begin on July 30.
When Wojnarowski reported earlier this month that several players were pushing for an enhanced insurance plan, he noted that it would be difficult to prove that any injury suffered in Orlando is directly responsible for a reduction in a player’s future earnings unless it directly threatens the player’s career. Based on today’s report, it sounds as if the new agreement will only cover those career-threatening ailments rather than shorter-term injuries.
Bam Adebayo, De’Aaron Fox, Kyle Kuzma, Donovan Mitchell and Jayson Tatum were among the players said to be lobbying for enhanced insurance protection. All five are eligible for contract extensions this offseason.