Writing in the Bubble

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NBA Releases a Comprehensive Media Guide for the League’s Return

The NBA is ramping up its preparation for it’s return to play.

With approximately a month until tip-off, the league has released a comprehensive guide for the media as well as NBA writers. The following is a complete breakdown of the rules as presented by the league office.

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A full media summary of guidelines and expectations will be provided in early July.

MEDIA OPTIONS FOR NBA COMEBACK 2020

FOR MEDIA NOT IN ATTENDANCE IN ORLANDO:

  • No application is necessary
  • All games will be available via linear television and/or online streaming
  • All media availabilities will be done virtually
  • Following media availabilities, video files will be archived and posted.

Group 1 Access includes:

  • Media Credential
  • Hotel room on the secure campus
  • Daily Covid-19 testing
  • Three meals per day
  • Transportation between hotel and game/practice venues
  • In-person physically-distanced access to post-game interview room and designated media seating. The interview room will be moderated by league or team Communications staff and consist of media questions from reporters live in the room as well as those in attendance virtually. Media in attendance will still have to connect through the virtual platform.

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PRIOR TO TRAVEL ALL APPLICANTS ARE REQUIRED TO:

  • Self-quarantine at home for at least 7 days prior to arrival
  • Exception: May leave home for essential activities (e.g., buying groceries or picking up medicine)
  • Review COVID-19 symptoms identified by the CDC and report to NBA if you or a household member are feeling sick or experiencing symptoms (fever, sore throat, cough, trouble breathing)
  • Media may not travel to campus if they are experiencing any such symptoms
  • Even if media is cleared by a physician to travel, NBA may decline admission
  • Review and sign any necessary medical or legal forms

UPON ARRIVAL AT SECURE NBA CAMPUS HOTEL:

  • Begin in-room quarantine on or around July 13th for seven (7) days
  • Individuals may not leave their hotel room except potentially for testing and no other individuals may enter room
  • Food and beverages will be delivered to room during quarantine period
  • Daily COVID-19 testing will be conducted
  • Temperature checks and symptom screening will be conducted
  • Fingertip pulse oximetry (i.e., blood oxygen saturation) checks will occur

FOLLOWING COMPLETION OF QUARANTINE AND STAY AT NBA CAMPUS HOTEL:

  • All individuals must remain on the NBA Campus (Campus includes hotel, practice and competition venues)
  • Strict physical distancing rules must be followed
  • No one is permitted to enter another person’s sleeping room at any time
  • Individuals must wear face coverings at all times except while alone in own hotel room, eating/ drinking, or exercising more than six feet from any other person
  • Failure to comply with any of these rules will result in revocation of credentials and termination of hotel stay
  • The NBA is encouraging Group 1 media to be in attendance for the duration of the NBA season (including seeding games and playoffs). However, a process will be in place for an outlet to switch out its representative in early September. All corresponding costs for that exchange will be the responsibility of the media outlet.

The NBA will continue to monitor developments with the coronavirus with input from medical experts, local government, teams, and players. Given the evolving nature of the coronavirus situation, these protocols may be updated from time to time by the NBA.

GROUP 2 ACCESS – Off-Campus Plan/ A very limited number of media will be approved on a round by round basis (seeding games are considered a round). As of now, no more than 12 media will be permitted in an arena at any one time so approved credential numbers will be in connection with that guidance.This number will be evaluated as the event continues.A limited number of photographers will be approved in this Group:

 

Group 2 Access includes:

  • Media Credential
  • Access to elevated media seating for working media beginning with seeding games on July 30
  • Writers will have a seating location determined by the game they plan to cover. All game requests will need to be made 24 hours prior to the game.
  • Photographers will also be within this media seating area with a view of the court and not on the baselines. Photographers within this group will not be permitted access to the court area or back of house locations.
  • All media availability (practice/games) will be conducted virtually
  • Group 2 Media must book their own accommodations. However, a limited number of hotel rooms will be reserved at a Disney hotel. To access this rate please contact Kelly Williams. Please note that these rooms are on a first-come, first-serve basis.
  • Group 2 media with cars will be provided parking passes for Disney’s Wide World of Sports Complex at the time they pick up credentials.
  • Group 2 media will have priority, when appropriate, to ask questions during media availabilities.

NOTE: Approved Group 2 media will NOT have access to the court level or back of house areas or practices.

All approved credentialed media will be required to practice physical distancing and wear a face covering at all times on the campus.

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