Report: 2020-21 NBA Season Won’t Begin Before Christmas Day

Michael Shapiro

The NBA informed the league’s Board of Governors on Thursday that the 2020-21 season will begin no earlier than Christmas Day, per The Athletic’s Shams Charania.

There is no firm date for the beginning of the 2020-21 season. 

The league’s calendar for next year has remained fluid ever since its COVID-19 suspension began on March 11. The 2020 NBA Draft has been pushed back to Nov. 18, though that date could be changed. There is currently no date set for the start of free agency. 

NBA commissioner Adam Silver has been hesitant to commit to any firm dates after the league's lengthy suspension. He told ESPN's Rachel Nichols that a Dec. 1 start date appeared "a bit early," adding that he prefers to start the 2020-21 season when fans can return to arenas. 

"We are deep into the planning stages, but only to the extent that we have dozens of permutations as we look into next season," Silver told Sports Illustrated's Chris Mannix. "It’s certainly not bubble or bust. Our first and highest priority would be to find a way to have fans in our arenas."

"We would like to find a way to play in front of fans, but it’s just too early to know how realistic this is."

The Rockets won't need much time to prepare for the 2020 draft as they don't have a first-round pick. For now, Houston's focus will be on surviving the 2020 playoffs as it trails the Lakers 2–1 in the second round. 

Game 4 on Thursday night is slated for 6 p.m. CT.