Top 5 scenarios for the NBA playoffs
It has been 2 months since the last NBA game has been played. As time goes by it becomes less and less likely that the rest of the 2019-2020 NBA season will resume. There is, however, still hope for the NBA playoffs.
The NBA has announced that it would like to resume its playoffs, but the earliest that it will resume play is early June. So what are some scenario's if the NBA starts its season in June?
A June start pretty much means that at best the NBA will have an abridged version of the playoffs. But what will that abridged version looks like?
First thing first would be finding a location. The NBA teams hosting games is pretty much out of the question. The league does not want fans attending the game and the travel requirements would put a lot of strain on the players.
Las Vegas and Disneyworld in Orlando are the most likely locations to host games. Both locations can host multiple games at a time and has the hotel accommodations and would not require much travel.
Here are 5 scenario's of what the 2020 NBA playoffs might look like.
5) 32 team single elimination tournament
This might be the most entertaining concept, but it is the most unlikely. Basically, it would be a March madness style tournament, with all 30 NBA teams making the playoffs as well as the top G-league teams in each conference making it as well.
Seeding could be down 1-16 in the east with the Bucks having the top seed and their G-league team Herd having the 16th seed. In the West the Lakers would have the top seed and the Salt Lake Stars would have the 16th seed. The rest of the seeds would be based off current standings.
Another option would be to reseed everyone 1-32 by current record regardless of conference affiliation. This might be fun as it created playoff matchups not seen
before. The G-league teams would face off against the top two NBA teams. Again, this would be the Bucks and Lakers vs the Herd and the Stars.
4) Regular playoff scheduling
This is also unlikely, but not out of the realm of possibility. The NBA would not have to tweak much to allow four rounds best of 7 series involving 16 teams. It would be just like any other year.
3) Best of 5 series
Another option would be to keep the regular format, but instead of best of 7 going to the best of 5. From 1983-2002 the first round of the NBA playoffs was a best of 5 series. Thailand 888 online casino actually gives this option as one of the most likely scenarios for restarting the NBA season.
A best of 5 would allow for a quicker abridged version of the playoffs all the while allowing the NBA to recoup some lost revenue.
2) Best of 5 first round, best of 7 the rest.
This idea is a mix of the two mentioned above and is basically repeating the NBA's playoff scheduling from 1983-2002. Like with other models, this one could be tweaked to allow interconference playoff series.
1) Top 4 each conference.
This one might be the most controversial as it dropped normal playoff teams from the line up and some good teams like Houston and Philadelphia would not make the post-season. But if the NBA is short on time this might make the most sense.
In this scenario there Bucks would host Heat in the east, while the Raptors and Celtics square off. In the west the Lakers and Jazz would meet while the Clippers and Nuggets would face off.
Losing out on stars like James Harden, Russell Westbrook, Joel Embiid, Luka Doncic, and Ja Morant would hurt the NBA, it would still have some of its biggest stars like Lebron, Anthony Davis, Kawahi Leonard and Giannis Antetokounmpo. In addition, the NBA could market someone like Utah's Rudy Gobert as a villian since it was his positive COVID-19 test that ended the NBA season.
Or, we could just not have an NBA playoffs and start the season in December. This is one of the least likely scenarios but as time goes by it does gain more traction. The NBA cannot afford to lose this much money, but at the same time it cannot take the PR nightmare of spreading the disease around.