Who knows if or when the NBA will return, but most indications are the NBA still wants to finish out the season. The NBA is not afraid to modify their product, but this would be a great opportunity to test out some things. A good example of this was the ending to the NBA All-Star game. They made it sound like they were doing it as a tribute to Kobe, but it was really about giving the "Elam Ending" a shot. And it was a success.
Some different ideas and concepts being floated:
- Abbreviated time frame before the playoffs. Maybe it is a short pre-season camp or handful of games, but the players will have to get back in shape.
- Best of 1, 3, 5, series?
- Chance to tinker with final playoff slots. Mini-tournament for final slot or two? Maybe even have two separate tournaments all together with draft position at stake.
- Reshuffling of the NBA calendar. This one I think is realistic and will happen. We all know once September hits, the NFL is king, and it is not remotely close. Half of the NBA season overlaps with the NFL. If they can structure it so that the season ends in July/August, with free agency and draft concluding by Labor Day, they can capture that time frame. Season would then maybe kick off at Christmas (?), which is when most people start to take notice of the NBA with the NFL regular season going into weeks 15/6/17.