Reports: NBA Will Start Allowing Players Back in Facilities on May First
There may be light at the end of the tunnel. Beginning on May first, the NBA will allow teams to open their practice facilities in cities and states where local governments have eased stay at home orders.
Adrain Wojnarowski of ESPN is reporting that Teams will be allowed to make facilities open to players voluntarily for individual workouts, but more extensive group sessions will be prohibited. In cities where restrictions aren't loosened, the league will work with teams to make other arrangements for players.
Oklahoma City Mayor David Holt is planning on allowing the city's shelter in place order to expire on the same day teams would enable players to come back to facilities. Holt's plan is in line with Governor Kevin Stitt's plan to lift restrictions statewide.
Still allowed some non-essential business to open as early as Friday. Holt is still apprehensive about lifting restrictions that soon as May first "isn't the date my gut would pick."
In a conference call with the media this past week, Thunder Guard Chris Paul says, "We just want to play." ..."We're trying to figure out what that looks like."..."I don't know what's going to happen; I think right now, I'm just more focused on playing."
Paul is also steadfast in saying that conditions must be safe before the NBPA would put players on the court. "We're the ones that are playing, and that comes first." ..."We don't ever put guys in a situation where the injury risk is higher than before."
How the NBA will operate once the season gets back underway is still up in the air. Paul says, "There are so many layers that would have to come into play for that to even happen."..."That's great that people are brainstorming, and that's nice that everybody wants us to get back to play, but I think the safety of the players, the families, the fans, everyone, all that comes before any of it."
Hopefully, when May gets here, Paul and Adam Silver will have enough information to put a plan into action.