Kierrla Yates, Staff Writer
College sports were not the only sports to be cancelled this spring. Little leagues, high schools, and many professional leagues have been cancelled, as well. Others, such as the 2020 Olympic Games, and the NBA season, have been postponed.
Basketball lovers missed their March Madness Tournament last month and may be missing out on the rest of the 2019-2020 NBA season. On the NBA’s official website, it states that the season has been “temporarily postponed,” but with COVID-19 still rising, and with many more schools joining the online pathway, it is foreseeable that the 2019-2020 season might be over. If that is the case, it would leave confusion surrounding the winners of the season, both in the MVP race and team competition. The decision to postpone the season might also impact next season, as well as impact the way teams and players spread positivity.
The state of the official Kia Race to MVP has not been updated since March 10. It showed that the top five contenders are, in order from first to fifth, Giannis Antetokounmpo from the Bucks, Kawhi Leonard from the Clippers, Chris Paul from the Thunder, Jimmy Butler from Miami Heat, and Luka Doncic from the Mavericks.
Since play has been postponed for over a month now, it is challenging to say which teams will make it to the playoffs; however, there are some teams that have a pretty certain chance. In the Eastern Conference, the top teams include the Milwaukee Bucks, The Toronto Raptors, the Boston Celtics, and the Miami Heat. The Bucks have the highest win percentage of 81 percent, or an overall record of 53-12.
In the Western Conference, the top teams are The Los Angeles Lakers, Los Angeles Clippers, the Denver Nuggets, and the Utah Jazz. The Lakers are leading their conference with an overall win percentage of 77 and a record of 49-14. However, when play resumes, the flow of the games could be very different from what is predicted now because of the inability of teams to practice and train together.
There are other challenges that might impact the rest of the play and even next year’s season. For some athletes, they may have been looking to retire after this season, get traded, or even be drafted. With the season being postponed, trades, drafts, and possibly retirement might be postponed.
However, some athletes may want to retire sooner than later. For example, the 35-year-old Milwaukee Buck, Andrew Bogut, was hoping to retire after the 2020 Olympics, but those have been postponed until 2021. As a result, he finds himself unsure if he can handle the training for another year and may be unable to participate in the Olympic games. Overall, the current state of the NBA has made it challenging for players and their families to determine what their futures may look like.
On a positive note, the current situation has allowed many players to spend more time with their families instead of spending hours travelling for games. Some players and their families have even decided to spend this time helping others in need. An example being the Sacramento Kings’ player, Harrison Barnes. He and his wife have donated money to help families in need get the groceries they can no longer afford.
The NBA as a whole has even taken the initiative to educate their fan base about health, safety, and how to avoid the spread of COVID-19. Despite the unease and uncertainty about what exactly will happen with the rest of the 2019-2020 season, the NBA has made sure to take care of their players, their fans, and their communities.