The NBA is getting serious about combating its DNP (rest) problem.
The league's owners are set to approve a set of rule changes that will penalize teams for resting healthy players, according to a report from USA TODAY's Jeff Zillgitt. According to Zillgitt, the rules will be approved in September and will go into effect for the upcoming season, which begins in October.
This comes two days after ESPN's Brian Windhorstreported that a memo had been sent out to teams outlining schedule changes designed to give players more rest, including reducing grueling stretches and cutting down on travel for one-off away games. These changes, which are made possible by starting the season a week earlier in October than in years past, ostensibly aim to disincentivize teams from resting healthy players.
The proposed schedule changes give special protection to nationally televised games by ensuring that those games are not part of a back-to-back. There's some speculation that resting players for nationally televised could result in a steeper punishment under the new rules.
Comissioner Adam Silver has spoken at length about the resting issue, expressing that he understands why teams want to rest stars but also acknowledging the challenges the trend presents from a business perspective.
“There is a recognition from teams that on one hand a certain amount of resting is just inevitable and appropriate to keep the players healthy, but that they shouldn’t be resting multiple starters on the same night,” Silver said at his NBA Finals press conference. “And, incidentally, wherever possible, they should rest at home. Because there, while I feel for the home fans, just as much as the away fans, the away fans may only get a chance to see that team once. And of course, the home team home fans can see that team many times.”