The NBA teams are gathered in Orlando.
By tonight, all will have been tested for the virus, all will go thru 48-hours of additional quarantine, then will be tested again.
Practices will start by Saturday, and there will be scrimmages in the next couple of weeks leading up to the start of the ‘Seeding Schedule’, eight games in all, to to determine who plays who in the playoffs.
We will all pay attention to see if there is an outbreak within the Disnehy World Campus in Orlando. Commissioner Adam Silver says his biggest fear is an infection outbreak within his bubble, even if all players from the 22-teams are clean once they enter the campus.
The Brooklyn Nets have been devastated already. 4-players testing positive on top of 4-others out with injuries or opting-out. The Washington Wizards have health issues, more injuries than positive tests, with 4-key players missing.
Other players are talking about how uncomfortable they are with all this, the testing, the illness threats, the protocols.
And when they play, if there are no outbreaks between now and opening tip-off, you will see something else.
The NBA’s new logo…”Black Lives Matter” on the arena floors where the games will be played. All part of the initiative from the 80-percent African Americans who are on NBA rosters. A show of solidarity.
The league is going a step farther, letting players replace the name plate on the back of their jersey, with a social message to America.
Some wanted insignias. Some wanted to put the names of George Floyd and others victimized by murder, on the jerseys.
The NBA instead wants messages and catch phrases, and will give the players a list to choose from. It is varied, it is powerful, it has meaning:
What is about to happen in the NBA should be a strong message going forward. Hoping the NFL-MLB-NHL can do the same.
As we try to restart sports, it is a hope we never have to revisit the horrors of what we have experienced.