Restarts At Risk

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  • Adam Silver said the NBA could come to a halt if coronavirus runs rampant.

The plan to restart the NBA season in Orlando is still on track, but as cases spike across the country – and the league – Commissioner Adam Silver said a spread in the NBA community could stop it for a second time.

“Never full steam ahead no matter what,” Silver said during the TIME 100 Talks. “One thing we are learning about this virus is much [is] unpredictable, and we and our players together with their union look at the data on a daily basis. If there were something to change that was outside of the scope of what we are playing for, certainly, we would revisit our plans.”

Silver didn’t put a threshold on what would force the league to cancel the restart. Isolated cases will be tolerated, but a widespread outbreak within the community would be the indicator to shut it down. Even with a spike of cases in Florida, he still believes the Disney World campus will be safer than elsewhere.

The NBA shut down in March when Utah Jazz forward Rudy Gobert tested positive and essentially brought the sports world to a halt.

Other COVID-19 News:

—  The Denver Nuggets closed their practice facility after at least three members of the 35-person traveling party headed to Orlando tested positive for COVID-19. Brooklyn Nets players DeAndre Jordan and Spencer Dinwiddie also tested positive, and Jordan has opted out of the NBA restart.

—  At least four major amateur basketball tournaments are scheduled for Las Vegas this summer, making it, as usual, a prime recruiting ground for NCAA coaches. The wrinkle? There’s a recruiting dead period in July and August because of the pandemic, meaning the coaches will have to watch over live streams.

—  The University of Dayton has canceled its football season opener, while Williams College in Massachusetts has canceled sports for the upcoming academic year while also cutting tuition 15%.