SALT LAKE CITY — The NBA continues to make headway in figuring out how to deal with roster sizes, replacing injured players and what happens if a player tests positive for COVID-19 during the NBA’s 22-team resumed season in Orlando.
The devil is in the details and the many details the league is negotiating could still take weeks to iron out completely.
According to reports by ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski and Bobby Marks, the league is planning on having a one-week ‘transaction window’ for all 30 NBA teams beginning on June 22, ahead of the tentative July 31 resumption of games, in which teams can fill open roster spots, sign or waive players, and convert two-way deals to standard NBA contracts.
Sources: The NBA's "transaction window" starting around June 22 will include all 30 teams -- not just the 22 returning to play in Orlando. Teams will be allowed to covert two-way players into NBA contracts and sign eligible free agents for the rest of season. https://t.co/IhCtUQRYcb— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) June 8, 2020
The Utah Jazz will be heading to Orlando without Bojan Bogdanovic, who will miss the rest of this season following wrist surgery in May, and will have particular interest in what the NBA will allow in order to fill the void left by Bogdanovic, whether that be signing another player who can regularly contribute, or adding a player to the end of the bench for insurance purposes.
Expected restrictions on eligible replacement players are likely to include the player needing to be signed to an NBA or G League team or be on training-camp rosters this season, according to reports.
According to Wojnarowski, teams are pushing back on the league’s preference to limit rosters to 15 players and to leave two-way players out of the bubble unless they are converted to a standard NBA contract before the team arrives in Orlando.
Teams would prefer to have two-way players on hand while in Florida so that if a player suffers an injury or becomes infected with the coronavirus after the ‘transaction window’, a two-way player could be made a substitute without having to go through quarantine before joining the team.
If the league stands pat on limiting a roster to 15 players, the Jazz would have the opportunity to replace Bogdanovic before heading to Orlando, but if another injury were to occur or a player test positive for the coronavirus, they would have to continue with their set roster, or wait for an additional replacement from outside the bubble to go through a standard quarantine.
With games expected to be played at least every other day, with back-to-backs thrown in, waiting for a player who has not practiced with the team and will have to quarantine for an extended period before joining the team might not be worth the risk and time.
The NBA is planning to continue play if a player tests positive for the coronavirus, requiring that player to quarantine for anywhere between seven and 14 days.
The Athletic’s Shams Charania reported the National Basketball Players Association went over a tentative schedule for how things will play out in Orlando during a conference call on Monday.
With the right regular season games beginning on July 31, the NBA expects to hold the play-in tournament for the final playoff spot on Aug. 16 and 17.
The NBA playoffs would then start on Aug. 18, the second round would begin Sept. 1 and the conference finals would start on Sept. 15, leaving the NBA Finals to begin Sept. 30 with a last possible date for a Finals Game 7 on Oct. 12.
All scheduling and roster related details at this point remain tentative and have not been finalized by the league or the NBPA.