Report: NBA Targeting July 31 as Return Date

According to The Athletic's Shams Charania, the NBA is targeting July 31 as a potential date for a return to play.
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For months, the NBA has been without a set date to return to play. There have been timeframes mentioned — the latest being late July to early August — but now, we have the closest thing to an official return date as possible.

According to The Athletic's Shams Charania, Commissioner Adam Silver has informed the league's Board of Governors that the NBA is targeting July 31 to resume the season. 

If this ends up becoming a reality, games will resume nearly five months after the season was indefinitely suspended on March 11 when Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert tested positive for COVID-19.

The format by which the league will return is still unknown, though Charania reported earlier Friday afternoon that a majority of the NBA's general managers voted to keep the traditional East vs. West format once the postseason begins, rather than re-seeding all teams 1-16.

Charania also noted that 83% of general managers voted for a "playoffs plus" option, which would include a play-in tournament and include at least 20 teams. 

Regardless of what happens, the LA Clippers appear to be well-positioned in the franchise's pursuit of its first-ever NBA title. 

When the season was suspended, the Clippers were playing arguably their best basketball of the season, having gone 7-2 since returning from the All-Star break. Kawhi Leonard and Paul George were locked-in, and new additions Marcus Morris Sr. and Reggie Jackson were beginning to fit in with their new team.

Games will look very different upon a potential return, but fans can finally start looking forward to watching their favorite teams again later this summer.