On Friday, we covered the story that Kyrie Irving was a “driving force” in leading NBA players who were concerned about the bubble. Later that day, he led a conference call with about 100 players and reportedly voiced opposition against going to the Orlando bubble, reasoning that it would be a distraction from the ongoing protests against systemic racism. Dwight Howard was also vocal on the call.
Putting aside whether or not Irving’s take on this has validity, former NBA GM and current ESPN contributor Bobby Marks noted what the financial toll this would ultimately take on players if they made this stand.
Regarding the second bullet point: If these playoffs don’t happen, the NBA owners could exercise the “force majeure” clause in the collective bargaining agreement, and nullify it. From there, who on Earth knows when there would be basketball again.
Adrian Wojnarowski and Ramona Shelburne canvassed the league over the weekend and reported the following this morning: “ESPN’s reporting with players, agents, the NBPA and league officials over the weekend found no indication that the NBA’s return is in jeopardy — or that there’s even a significant group of players ready to sit out.”
It’s a lock that if/when the NBA season does resume that it will include a lot of visibility into the ongoing protests across America; cancelling the season, however, would ultimately cause a dire financial toll on the players.