NBA Commissioner Adam Silver recently revealed that he did not plan on making any decisions about resuming operations until May. But as the calendar prepares to flip to another month, there are still no answers in sight for the unprecedented NBA season that’s been halted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Based on the reports that we got from varied outside officials, current public health officials … we are not in a position to make any decisions,” Silver said in a media conference call following a meeting with the NBA board of governors, via ESPN. “And it’s unclear when we will be.”
“I know it’s frustrating — it is for me and everyone involved that I am not in position to be able to answer the question,” Silver added. “There is still enormous uncertainty around the virus as well. Now there is a lot that is changing quickly and we may be in a very different position some number of weeks from now. But it is why I initially announced at the beginning of April that I felt with confidence we would not be able to make any decisions in the month of April. I should clarify that I didn’t mean to suggest that on May 1 I would be in a position.”
Ultimately, the league is focused on receiving the all-clear from health experts who deem players and necessary personnel safe to conduct games. Silver and other officials are working in the meantime on developing plans for the season’s return, which range from playing in one location without fans to delaying the start of the 2020-21 season.
“We are looking at all those things right now,” Silver said. “I’d say that in terms of bubble-like concepts, many of them have been proposed to us and we’ve only listened. We are not seriously engaged yet in that type of environment because I can’t answer what precisely would we need to see in order to feel that that environment provided the needed health and safety for our players and everyone involved.”
The NBA has been suspended since March 11 following the positive COVID-19 diagnosis of Utah Jazz star Rudy Gobert. Six other players, including Kevin Durant, were also confirmed positive in recent weeks though Silver confirmed that an undisclosed amount of additional players also contracted the virus and were abiding by quarantine orders.