This year, sports are still figuring out how to open their season safely. Other leagues, like MLB for instance have reported 104 cases publicly, but have said to have more not made public. The MLB has cancelled 43 games, due to Covid-19. But the NBA has found a way to safely open their season.
The NBA season was due to start on March 11, 2020. Because of Covid-19, they had to postpone it or maybe even cancel it. During the months March to October, the NBA brainstormed a way to go on with their season safely. With new studies on how Covid-19 works and spreads coming out daily, the NBA’s plan to open their season changed multiple times. But they knew they had to get a season going. Disney World in Orlando has been closed to due Covid-19, so someone from the NBA Covid-19 task force thought of making a “bubble”.
How the “Bubble” works.
Because of the lack of space and when the seasons playoffs start, the NBA could only take so many teams. The teams that were picked (the teams with better records), were Covid tested, along with their coaches, staff and trainers. In the Orlando resort, they made courts for practice and for games. The players, staff and coaches all have their own rooms in different parts of the resort. They tried to clump a team away from another team.
Every single day, players, referees and anybody who works at the Bubble is tested. The test takes 30 mins to get results and after they are Covid-free, they are allowed in. The food and other things the players need are shipped in and then cleaned and are carefully monitored and handled. Because the league only wants so many people, no family of the players or staff are allowed in. But the players can see their family every once in a while, with Covid tests performed before and after and with players carefully monitored.
What players do in their free time
When the players aren’t playing or practicing, Disney world, has lots to offer. With pools, rollercoasters and all kinds of attractions, players never get bored. Many NBA players have shared on their social media photos of them and their teammates doing all kinds of things. For example, Lonzo Ball and the Pelicans had a late night game of bowling. While players like Lebron James spends the majority of his time practicing on the court or in the gym working out.
For “renting” Disney World for their season, and all of the other expenses – the NBA has paid over 150 million towards the bubble. Most of the money went to renting Disney World, but there are lots of other things the NBA has to pay for.
The NBA has done an amazing job of creating a season in such a weird time, with a limited amount of time. The fact that the NBA has had zero cases while leagues like the MLB has cases all over the place, reflects the time and effort the NBA has put forward to it. Millions of people all around the world are happy that there is something to watch on TV – for a lot of people, it’s a little light in a very weird time.