The NBA is back! Mims looks at the complexities of returning to play and why some players are opting out
NBA teams have arrived in Orlando to resume the 2019-2020 season. They will play a total of 8 regular season games and then start the playoffs. Several players have decided not to participate in the restart, including Bradley Beal, DeAndre Jordan, Avery Bradley and Spencer Dinwiddie. The reason cited were related to having COVID-19 — concerns about catching it and injuries.
Many fans feel that the players have an obligation to play and should return to complete the season. I think the NBA acted fairly by allowing players to opt out if they wanted to. While we all miss having sports to watch, it is a personal choice whether one plays or not. Teams that have a legitimate chance to win the title are showing up mostly intact. One exception might be the Lakers, due to the loss of Avery Bradley and Rajon Rondo, however they did sign J.R. Smith to their roster.
The Sixer’s Joel Embiid expressed reservations about going to Florida to begin playing again. His concerns have some validity because Florida is one of the states with an alarming increase in COVID cases. Embiid came under attack from Kendrick Perkins, a television studio analyst for ESPN, who indicated that Embiid should not have voiced his true feelings and just opted out. He came under serious scrutiny for his criticism and later back down from his stance.
The coronavirus has everyone in uncharted waters. We want it to be over, but it is not. We want to go back to the ways that were normal to us, but we cannot. The transition should be gradual and strategic. Do not rush the process, Trust the process! It worked for the Sixers. The first game for Philly is against the Pacers on 8/1/20.
Follow me on Twitter and we can talk about the NBA.