Among marketplaces where governmental restrictions are keeping practice facilities shuttered, teams are asking the NBA whether players can bypass returns to those cities and report directly to the league’s proposed campus environment for the start of training camps, sources told ESPN.
Most teams in regions still adhering to stay-at-home policies amid the coronavirus pandemic have an abundance of players who left their marketplace during the shutdown and would need to quarantine for an extended period — perhaps as many as 14 days — prior to joining workouts in team facilities. Teams want to avoid having to quarantine significant portions of their rosters twice — once upon returning to more restrictive markets, and again, at the bubble site.
In anticipation of the league’s expectation of restarting the season, the NBA has told those teams that it plans to work with them on solutions that possibly include redirecting some teams directly to campus/bubble sites instead of team facilities to hold training camps, sources said.
The NBA has a board of governors call set for next Friday, which is expected to provide additional details for teams on a timetable and plan to proceed with the season. Teams are expecting the league to instruct them to start recalling players to their team’s markets around June 1, sources told ESPN.
Executives from Brooklyn, Boston, New York and Toronto were among those on Thursday’s general manager’s call with the league office who expressed concern about how waiting on the league to release a timetable complicates their ramp-ups to return in ways that are unique to those marketplaces, sources said.
Teams are pressing the league for the timeline, but they’re still resisting an official release of it. Among concerns: the uneven process of bringing back players overseas into North America, and some GMs describing voluntary workout environments that are losing momentum and interest among players.