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NBA Rumors: NBA Considering Condensed 82-Game Schedule for 2020-21

Adam Silver
Quinn Harris-USA TODAY Sports

Given the late start to the 2020-21 season, Atlanta Hawks general manager Travis Schlenk indicates that the NBA is reportedly considering a condensed version of an 82-game schedule.

Starting an 82-game campaign in early December and attempting to end the season in mid-June 2021 would be a virtually impossible grind for players to handle.

Yet, that appears to be something that the NBA is actively pursuing, albeit without the expected input of the league’s players.

The need for ending the season next June is paramount for the 2020-21 season. That’s because of the delayed 2020 Tokyo Olympics, which are scheduled to begin on July 23.

Right now, not even the proposed Dec. 1 start to the 2020-21 season is guaranteed, since the National Basketball Players Association (NBPA) has already indicated that the date is unlikely. This is also an issue that will have to be negotiated between the league and the NBPA.

The prospect of a reduced season isn’t a new concept for the league, which had a 66-game season for the 2011-12 season and a 50-game season in 1999.

In both instances, those shortened seasons were the result of labor-management conflicts. The current suspension of play stems from the continuing coronavirus pandemic.

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