NBA Considering Holding a Charity Exhibition Game During Hiatus
Players are eager to step onto the floor and commissioner Adam Silver is looking at every which way possible to make it happen sooner rather than later.
A potential exhibition game for charity may be an option.
“An option that we are looking at now … the impact on the national psyche of having no sports programming on television,” said Adam Silver. “And one of the things we’ve been talking about are, are there conditions in which a group of players could compete — maybe it’s for a giant fundraiser or just the collective good of the people — where you take a subset of players and, is there a protocol where they can be tested and quarantined and isolated in some way, and they could compete against one another?
“Because people are stuck at home, and I think they need a diversion. They need to be entertained.”
For a potential exhibition game at this time, all players will be required to test negative for COVID-19. The league would most certainly take every precaution necessary to assure matters do not get worse. Moreover, whenever league play is resumed, the NBA will require that each player undergoes regular COVID-19 testing to prevent community infection. Currently, there are seven confirmed cases of coronavirus in the NBA.
On ESPN, Adam Silver floats possibility of an NBA exhibition game played for charity, with a small subset of players, while league waits for opportunity to resume. Says he thinks fans especially need the diversion now.
— Howard Beck (@HowardBeck) March 18, 2020
At this time, the NBA is hoping that the season will return and cancelling the playoffs is viewed as the worst case scenario.
“When it comes to the timeframe in the league, I know people are talking about July or August, as far as I’m concerned when you get down to it, the last thing the NBA wants to do is cancel the playoffs,” Said Brian Windhorst of ESPN. “They will wait until, in my view, the last possible second to do that. Whether or not they have to play a series of single elimination games, they will not want to do that.
“Everything that we say, we all understand the health of the country is first, let’s just assume that and move on from that, for the sake of having a conversation. From my viewpoint, as long as the end of the NBA Finals, the final buzzer is not on the first Sunday of the NFL, if it literally comes the Saturday night before, well that would be college football, but literally comes days before the kickoff of the first NFL weekend, I think the NBA would do it. I think they would go all the way into September.
“Of course they’re not going to actually say that right now and nobody knows, but I think they really, really would want to make that happen.”
The plan for the NBA will be to begin play in empty arenas.