The National Basketball League’s Board of Governors have reached their decision and, after putting it to a vote, agreed to complete the 2019-2020 season this summer at the Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida beginning July 31, 2020.
When you wish upon a star …
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) June 4, 2020
Only the top 22 teams of the league will return, and it has been determined that nine eastern conference teams and 13 western conference teams will converge upon the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex.
You can see a full list of the teams returning below:
The NBA's return plan includes 13 Western Conference teams and nine Eastern Conference teams.
— NBA on ESPN (@ESPNNBA) June 3, 2020
According to a press release sent out by the NBA, the competitive play is expected to proceed as follows:
The 22 returning teams for the season restart would be the Milwaukee Bucks, Toronto Raptors, Boston Celtics, Miami Heat, Indiana Pacers, Philadelphia 76ers, Brooklyn Nets, Orlando Magic and Washington Wizards from the Eastern Conference and the Los Angeles Lakers, LA Clippers, Denver Nuggets, Utah Jazz, Oklahoma City Thunder, Houston Rockets, Dallas Mavericks, Memphis Grizzlies, Portland Trail Blazers, New Orleans Pelicans, Sacramento Kings, San Antonio Spurs and Phoenix Suns from the Western Conference.
Each returning team would play eight seeding games, as selected from its remaining regular-season matchups. At the conclusion of the seeding games, the seven teams in each conference with the best combined records across regular-season games and seeding games would qualify for the playoffs.
If the team with the eighth-best combined record in its conference is more than four games ahead of the team with the ninth-best combined record in the same conference, then the team with the eighth-best record would earn the eighth playoff seed.
If the team with the eighth-best combined record in its conference (Team A) is four games or fewer ahead of the team with the ninth-best combined record in the same conference (Team B), then Teams A and B would compete in a play-in tournament to determine the eighth playoff seed. To earn the eighth playoff seed, Team A would need to defeat Team B once and Team B would need to defeat Team A two games in a row.
The 2019-20 season would conclude with a traditional playoff format with best-of-seven series in the first round, conference semifinals, conference finals and the NBA Finals.
The Finals are expected to be held no later than October 12.
Sources are saying that training camp can begin in June with arrival at Disney World permitted to be as early as the beginning of July.
Sources: The NBA informed the Board of Governors of scheduled dates:
– Training camp: June 30, July 7 travel to Orlando
– 2019-20 season: July 31
– Free agency: Oct. 18
– 2020-21 targets: Nov. 10 training camp, Dec. 1 opening night (can remain fluid)
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) June 4, 2020
There is still no word at this time where the NBA players will be housed or how their presence will affect ongoing Disney vacations.
This is a developing story and Inside the Magic will continue to update its readers as more information comes to light.