Though the NBA still hopes to make significant changes to its schedule in the coming years, it will not hold an official vote at the board of governors meeting in April, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.
The league informed teams on Friday it plans to keep studying and discussing three proposed schedule changes, per Wojnarowski: An in-season tournament, a play-in round for the playoffs, and reseeding conference finalists. The NBA wanted to make the changes official at the annual meeting in April with a two-thirds vote in order to implement them for the 2021-22 season, which will mark its 75th anniversary.
Despite not holding a vote, however, the NBA still hopes it can get the changes done by then.
The NBA has floated several incentive options in order to encourage a competitive midseason tournament, including gifting the winning team an extra draft pick and awarding every player on the winning team a $1 million bonus. The league wants the tournament to start with a pool-play round, which would be part of the regular season schedule. Then, the top eight teams would advance to a single-elimination tournament that would finish in either mid-December or mid-January. The idea is one that commissioner Adam Silver has been pushing for some time.
The postseason play-in round appears to have more support across the league, and would undoubtedly create an exciting atmosphere for fans. Both the play-in round and midseason tournament would reportedly shrink the regular season from 82 games to 78 or 79 games.
According to Wojnarowski, travel is the largest concern surrounding the reseeding of the Eastern and Western Conference finals — the proposal that currently has the least support league-wide. Per the report, teams could see travel increased by 60 percent during that round should they end up playing outside of their conference, which would create numerous logistical issues.
While the league isn’t planning on holding a vote in April, it reportedly still hopes to make a presentation on the schedule changes to owners at the meeting.
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