The NBA is exploring the concept of shortening its preseason to reduce wear and tear on players, Zach Lowe of Grantland.com reported Friday.
The league is in still in the information-gathering phase, Lowe reports, but the idea being considered involves maintaining the 82-game season, but beginning it about 10 days earlier to stretch out each team's full schedule.
That would allow the league to slice off a couple of back-to-backs from each team’s schedule, and in the process limit some of the rest imbalance that is inevitable in juggling hundreds of games across 29 arenas.
Currently, the majority of NBA teams play seven or eight preseason games, and each team sets its own preseason schedule while the league handles the regular-season calendar. Shortening the preseason would ease the logistical burden on the team executives tasked with scheduling the exhibition games, but it might be a tough sell for coaches that value additional practice time. As a result, Lowe reports some NBA teams have suggested the idea of allowing for NFL-style "organized team activities" during the offseason.