The NBA issued some big news for players and coaches on Saturday night. Beginning on May 1st, certain NBA teams will be permitted to open their practice facilities so players can get back to work, according to ESPN. There is a catch, however. When May 1st rolls around, not every team can just open their doors. First, the facilities have to be located in a state where the government has eased the stay-at-home orders.
So, does this make much of a difference for the Philadelphia 76ers? At the moment, not really. Unfortunately, both Pennsylvania and New Jersey are still locked down as all non-essential businesses are closed, and residents are ordered to stay inside and social distance.
And since the 76ers' practice facility is located in Camden, New Jersey, there could be a realistic chance they're one of the last NBA teams to allow players to get back in the gym. According to a report from The Philadelphia Inquirer, New Jersey doesn't seem to be easing stay-at-home orders anytime soon.
"Public health must come before we can begin to restart our economy," New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy said recently. "We cannot let up, we cannot let a beautiful spring day like this prevent our social distancing. There will be many other spring days to come, and we can enjoy them together. But not now."
The Philadelphia 76ers haven't been on the court since March 11th. Even when the NBA permitted teams to leave practice facilities open for a few days after the suspension was put in place, 76ers players had to stay at home and self-quarantine. There's hope the Sixers can soon get back on the court so guys can get in shape for a potential return of the NBA -- but the likelihood of that happening by May 1st is quite slim.
Justin Grasso covers the Philadelphia 76ers for Sports Illustrated. You can follow him on Twitter: @JGrasso_