NBA confirms 'exploratory' talks for late-July restart at Disney World
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The NBA has confirmed it's taken a significant first step toward a return for the 2019-20 season.
The league is engaged in "exploratory conversations" with The Walt Disney Company about restarting the suspended season at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex in late July, NBA chief communications officer Mike Bass announced Saturday.
The complex, which is located at the Walt Disney World Resort, would be the "single site for an NBA campus for games, practices, and housing," Bass said.
Earlier this week, Disney World reportedly emerged as the front-runner to host the remainder of the NBA campaign. The park is believed to have started modifying some of its hotel areas to accommodate the league and all of its personnel.
The Orlando site is also reportedly the proposed host for an early-July return for Major League Soccer.
A bubble-like resort on the Las Vegas Strip was also supposedly considered as a possible location for the NBA season.
Fans are not expected to be permitted to attend games. Players would be further kept safe by the park limiting outsider access into the campus-like environment.
Los Angeles Lakers star Jared Dudley said earlier this week that he was assured the league would allow players to leave a quarantined location before all games are completed, though they would be barred from playing again if they test positive for the coronavirus.
"Our priority continues to be the health and safety of all involved, and we are working with public health experts and government officials on a comprehensive set of guidelines to ensure that appropriate medical protocols and protections are in place," Bass added.
A format for the remainder of the campaign and playoffs has yet to be decided, but the NBA reportedly sent all 30 general managers a survey late Friday that asked them to vote on formats they prefer to see.