On Monday night, ESPN hosted a special featuring Commissioners from the NBA, WNBA, NHL, MLB, NFL and MLS on restarting sports. NBA Commissioner Adam Silver tried to strike a tone between empathizing with players who want to address social issues and/or are concerned with their health, and the need to get toward a new normal where society learns to coexist with the coronavirus.
I’ll leave his explanation on threading the needle below.
Adam Silver explained why the NBA is attempting a return and how players can still bring awareness to social justice issues on the court. pic.twitter.com/tXV7wZFHFB— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) June 16, 2020
"It will entail enormous sacrifice on behalf of those players and for everyone involved ..."— NBA on ESPN (@ESPNNBA) June 16, 2020
—Adam Silver on the challenges of bringing the NBA back pic.twitter.com/bc3YPi6GEN
One of most notable things Silver mentioned was regarding any player on one of the 22 teams going to the season restart in Orlando, Florida. If a player on one of those teams decides not to go to Florida, he will not be penalized for it.
Adam Silver on Orlando bubble "It may not be for everyone, it will entail enormous sacrifice" pic.twitter.com/OIxRUatAUM— gifdsports (@gifdsports) June 16, 2020
Adam Silver to ESPN: “My sense is we’re gonna be able to work through most of those issues the next few weeks. … We have an agreement with the players association. If a player chooses not to come, it’s not a breach of his contract. We accept that."— Fred Katz (@FredKatz) June 16, 2020
It will be interesting to see how the league works with the player’s union on working out issues ranging from player safety to using their collective platform to promote social causes.