Nothing has been finalized yet, but after more than two months without basketball, there’s positive momentum towards the NBA resuming the 2019-20 season in some capacity. The most recent reports indicate that Orlando, and specifically Disney World, remain the frontrunner to host the games.
With a return to play sometime in the next few months looking increasingly likely, the next step for teams and players is figuring out how to prepare for playing basketball again. Teams across the league have started to reopen their practice facilities with limitations and guidelines in place to promote health and safety, but LeBron James has reportedly gone one step further.
LeBron has been hosting private workouts with select teammates at a secure location, according to Shams Charania of The Athletic.
It’s been different for every team. For example, in L.A., LeBron James has held private workouts with one-to-two teammates at a time in a closed-off, private location, on court. All the safety measures have been taken, I’m told, in these private workouts. Everyone involved has been tested, everyone involved has practiced social distancing. everyone involved has taken the necessary steps to ensure that they’re following all the guidelines.
The Clippers, I’m told, have had some players do the same in terms of working out and getting together on the court. This is a way for both teams to gain chemistry and be able to be in shape and in tune with each other as a potential resumption of the season gets near.
As cities shut down, and social distancing measures were put into place, it simply wasn’t possible for teams to practice for well over a month, and some players didn’t even have basketball hoops at their house. Even during the offseason, most players would never go that long without at least getting some shots up or playing pick-up.
Considering the mandatory break from team activities, and even training for some players, along with the strange environment all the games will be played in, the actual basketball might look a little rough when they start up again. So as long as all the safety guidelines are being followed, it’s a great idea for LeBron and Co. to try and regain some familiarity ahead of time.
Once play resumes, it will be interesting to see if there’s any competitive advantage for teams and players who have been able to do things like this.