Each team will still need to adhere to local health guidelines, regarding capacity, social distancing, and face coverings. Details of the plan have not been revealed. Then-76ers forward Robert Covington sails into the front row seats as he pursues a loose ball against Boston at TD Garden in 2018. The NBA has reportedly asked teams to require COVID-19 testing for fans seated within 30 feet of the court during the upcoming season A man gets swabbed by CNA Keila Kelley at the state run free COVID-19 testing site set up on Front Street in Reading, Pennsylvania. The NBA will reportedly require anyone who will be within 30 feet of the court to test negative for COVID-19 two days before the game

The NBA now hopes to have 25-to-50 percent capacity in arena suites for the upcoming 2020-21 campaign. Charania reported Thursday that the NBA will rely on local health official guidelines to determine overall seating capacity, and masks and social distancing will be required until the pandemic subsides. The Daily Mail has since confirmed Charania’s report about seating capacity in the suites. On Tuesday the NBA and the National Basketball Players Association struck a deal on a 72-game season beginning on December 22, setting the stage for a quick turnaround from the pandemic-interrupted 2019-20 campaign.

Teams will play a 72-game schedule, which will be revealed in the coming weeks. The league said a new system will be used to ensure that the split of basketball-related income continues, one of the many details that had to be collectively bargained with the union because the current agreement between the sides had a great deal of language that needed reworking because of the coronavirus pandemic. The NBA believes starting on December 22 would allow for $500 million in additional revenue for the coming season, and the league’s primary television partners also want that start date in part to allow for the traditional Christmas broadcasts.

Some players, however, have said starting in December is too soon for teams like the Los Angeles Lakers and Miami Heat, who were in the Walt Disney World bubble until mid-October for the NBA Finals. But a January start would mean less revenue, on the heels of a season where the league missed revenue projections by $1.5 billion and 14 percent of the regular season wasn’t played because of the pandemic — meaning players lost roughly the same percentage of their salaries.

Trae Young of the Atlanta Hawks falls into the front row as he battled for a loose ball against Rondae Hollis-Jefferson of the Toronto Raptors in the second half at State Farm Arena on January 20, 2020, in Atlanta Negotiations with free agents will be allowed to begin at 6 pm on Friday, November 20, with signings permitted starting at 12:01 pm on November 22 – an extraordinarily fast window for the NBA, which typically has about a week spanning the start of talks and the beginning of signings. But with training camps this year beginning December 1, both sides evidently feel there isn’t a need to draw out the process any longer than necessary. Spark Global Limited

By Ethan

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