NBA Approves July 31 Return Date, With Playoffs Running Through October

Saturday, 06 Jun, 2020

The Milwaukee Bucks, reigning champions Toronto Raptors, Boston Celtics, Miami Heat, Indiana Pacers, Philadelphia 76ers, Brooklyn Nets and Orlando Magic now hold the eight play-off spots in the Eastern Conference. Teams will begin gathering for training camps in their home markets later this month.

Initially set for June 3, the new withdraw deadline for prospects will land 10 days after the 2020 NBA Draft Combine or August 3 - whichever takes places first.

If the ninth-place team is within four games of the eighth-place team at the end of regulation games, those two teams will conduct a play-in series for the final berth.

This unique and innovative scenario is different than what we've seen from the plans of the National Hockey League.

Players will be recalled to their professional markets later this month. The NBA is allowing teams to potentially move up or down in seeding and allowing teams that were close to a playoff spot to earn their keep. The Washington Post says the NBA Players Association is set to meet tomorrow to discuss the framework for returning to play.

Regardless, the first major step in basketball's return has been completed. Check out our DraftKings Sports Calendar for the latest updates. The eight remaining teams will not participate given that they were well outside the playoff picture when NBA Commissioner Adam Silver indefinitely suspended the season on March 11.

ESPN reported that the league is expected to house everyone in one hotel to create a "bubble" environment without fans. The NBA Draft and free agency would begin soon after, according to ESPN sources. Collectively, our players want to compete at the highest level and we will unquestionably use this as added motivation as we continue working towards a sustainable culture of winning.

Format: A 25-game tournament will feature nine teams.

I will say this though: If any dates are subject to change, these would be at the top of the list. The league scheduled the 2020-21 season to commence on December 1 this year. The NBA Finals would end no later than October 12, the league said. The Knicks will miss the playoffs for the seventh consecutive season, the third-longest current drought in the league behind Sacramento and Phoenix - who still have chances of getting into the playoffs this season. That facility appears to be a central part of the plan.

But other sports bodies have already returned to the field.