The NBA It was the first sports league in the United States to take action against the coronavirus pandemic (Covid-19), after confirming that the Utah Jazz Center, Rudy Robert, tested positive for the virus.
Currently, two weeks after closing its doors, 14 cases of the virus have been reported in the Association, among which are two players from Los Angeles Lakers. Its main player, and NBA ambassador, Lebron James, spoke about the impact of the virus on the basketball league.
“What happens when someone tested positive for the virus and you’re on the court with it and there’s a loose ball?”James questioned during his speech on the Road Trippin ‘podcast, where he joined Lakers presenter Alice Clifton, as well as Channing Frye and Richard Jefferson, former teammates of the “King” in Cleveland.
Playing without fans?
For a moment, before determining the suspension of the season, there was talk of the possibility of play with the empty seats, just as sporting events were held in various soccer leagues in various countries.
James reiterated his position on returning to the court without fans of the Staples Center or any other arena: “What is the word ‘sport’ without ‘fanatic’? There is no emotion in it. There is no crying. There is no joy. There is no back and forth. There is no rhyme or reason to play on visiting soil and beat the local team for their fans and vice versa “, added the third player with the most points in NBA history (34,087).
For the three-time league champion, fans are an extension of the on-court quintet. By going against other teams, you also compete against them: “That’s what also causes the players’ sense of competitiveness, knowing that you will visit a hostile environment and yes, you will play against the opponent in front of you, but You also want to kick the fans in the butt. “
“I would love to get back on the court. I won’t just sit here saying nothing. But it wouldn’t be the same as playing five-on-five. Playing without the fans is like practice. […] I don’t know how we can imagine a sporting event without fans. It’s just a weird dynamic“he confessed.
For now, without an official date of return to activity on the field, the insider Adrian Wojnarowski, from ESPN, reported that for the weekend of Labor Day, which is celebrated on September 1, could be when the Finals have finished, then the teams have stated that July 1 should not pass without resuming the season.
“You can’t go straight to the playoffs because it discredits the more than 60 games in which the players have struggled to keep their place.”said James, whose team led the Western Conference at the time the season ended, with a 49-14 record. As a solution, the four-time MVP winner suggested reducing the regular schedule by five to 10 games.