NBA Season to Resume with 22-Team Format
The league is also discussing potential home court ‘advantages’ to give to higher seeds.
Adrian Wojnarowski has reported that the NBA and its Board of Governors are set to vote for a specific format for the resumption of the NBA season. The format will include 22 teams; 13 from the Western Conference and 9 from the Eastern Conference. The Board of Governors will vote on this plan Thursday afternoon.
The 22 teams will consist of the teams with the 22 best records across the NBA, meaning the Bulls will not be invited to Orlando as they are 2.5 games behind the Wizards, who are in 22nd. All 22 teams will play eight regular-season games, the results of which will be added to each team’s current record.
Some details of the plan are murky. For example, how the league plans to deal with teams that have played a different number of games up to this point is unknown. It is also being reported, but not confirmed, that there is a potential of an 8-9 seed play-in game if the 9 seed is four or fewer games behind the 8 seed at the end of the eight games.
The NBA Board of Governors needs to have a three-fourths majority to pass this format proposal but are expected to achieve that percentage tomorrow afternoon.
In lieu of an actual home-court advantage, the NBA’s competition committee — made up of various owners, GMs, players, and coaches — are discussing potential ‘advantages’ the league could give home teams in the modified NBA Playoffs.
If the league does return, these advantages would make up for the fact that many top teams who have fought for home-court advantage over the course of several months will not actually get to utilize that advantage on their own home courts.
No official plan has been proposed to the league as of yet and any plan that would be proposed would need two-thirds of the NBA Board of Governors to vote for it.
Some of the potential advantages that have been discussed are:
- The higher-seeded team being awarded the first possession of the second, third, and fourth quarters, following the traditional jump ball to begin the game.
- The higher-seeded team being allowed to designate one player to be able to be whistled for seven fouls instead of six before fouling out.
- The higher-seeded team receiving an extra coach’s challenge.
- The higher-seeded teams being able to transport their actual hardwood home court from their arenas to Orlando to try to preserve the feel of their home playing experience.
- An off-court feature in which playoff teams, in order of seeding 1-16, receive first choice on picking which hotel they will stay at in the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex and Disney World Resort. ESPN is owned by the Walt Disney Co.
While there are plenty of unknowns in the air still, it does seem the Bulls will not be partaking in the rest of the NBA season. That means, fingers-crossed, Jim Boylen has most likely coached his last game for the Bulls.