The NBA has pinpointed Martin Luther King Day (Jan. 18) as the opening night for next season, league sources told Yahoo Sports' Vincent Goodwill.
Emphasis is now reportedly on getting the NBA back to its typical mid-October start date in time for the 2021-22 season.
The league had initially announced in June that it was targeting Dec. 1 for the 2020-21 season tip-off, but subsequent reports suggested it would consider starting as late as March.
The upcoming campaign could still start closer to Christmas Day (Dec. 25), but in any case, the league will give teams two months' notice before the season begins, according to Goodwill.
As the upcoming NBA calendar currently stands, the 2020 Draft will be held on Nov. 18. No date is set for the start of free agency, but NBPA director Michele Roberts has expressed the latest possible start date would have to be around Dec. 1.
Financial ramifications on league operations, largely stemming from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, require the league office and the NBPA to agree on several changes to their present collective bargaining agreement for the NBA to set its salary cap for 2020-21.
Both sides have until Oct. 30 to notify the other party if a decision is made to terminate the current CBA altogether.