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Tsai: Owners not united on NBA season resumption

Brooklyn NetsBrooklyn Nets owner Joe Tsai says team owners are not unified on a 2019-2020 NBA season resumption after the coronavirus shutdown, with a predictable divide based on playoff potential.

How the NBA potentially finishes the 2019-2020 season is up in the air, as the league as floated several different scenarios (holding games in Las Vegas or Disney World, potentially going right to the playoffs, etc.). Of course the Milwaukee Bucks and Los Angeles Lakers want to finish the season in some form, as they have the best conference records and legitimate shots at a championship; the Golden State Warriors and Cleveland Cavaliers may not share that enthusiasm, with no shot at the playoffs and little to play for, save the chance of tanking for a better draft choice.

That notion of what is at stake for individual NBA teams complicates any decision on resuming and finishing the the season, and it must be balanced with the safety of players and staff. Tsai, whose Nets would be in the playoffs today as a #7 seed, doesn’t sound too enthusiastic about ending the season with full play, per the New York Post:

“If you look at the Los Angeles Lakers or Milwaukee Bucks, they are in first place when the season got suspended,” Tsai said last week to a virtual classroom of students at Stanford, where his daughter is a junior.

“There is a chance for them to go to the championship. Of course they want to play. If you are in 28th place, maybe this season isn’t that important. There is a difference in opinion among the owners, as well.”…

“I’m kind of under a gag order of what I really think the NBA should do,” said Tsai, who is quarantined at his home in Hong Kong. “Everybody is still trying to figure things out, with the hope that maybe we can reopen the current season.”

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