MIAMI (AP) – The NBA is now one-third of the way back, at least in terms of voluntary training.
With Miami opening its doors Wednesday, 10 out of 30 league teams have advanced with individual training on the pitch – the first session permitted since the league ordered teams to close their training facilities as part of the coronavirus pandemic response about two months ago.
Los Angeles Lakers target Saturday. “data-reactid =” 25 “> In addition to the Heat, other teams that have been opened so far are Portland, Cleveland, Milwaukee, Denver, Atlanta, Indiana, Sacramento, Toronto, and Utah. More will come today; , Orlando is close, and Los Angeles Lakers target Saturday.
And while there is still no decision on whether the season can continue – NBA Commissioner Adam Silver, according to someone with knowledge of the situation, has told league players he hopes to make a call by mid-June at the latest – returning for some similar work is generally considered a step positive.
Raptor wing Malcolm Miller when defending NBA champions opened their facilities again Monday. ” Hopefully, you know, in a week we can start increasing it a little more. But to start we just keep it very basic, very simple. “Data-reactid =” 27 “>” We kind of felt it, played it with our ears, carried it day by day, “said Toronto assistant coach Brittni Donaldson, who was in the gym together Raptor wing Malcolm Miller when defending NBA champions opened their facilities again Monday. ” Hopefully, you know, in a week we can start increasing it a little more. But to start we just keep it very basic, very simple. “
The league has very strict rules about this exercise; no head coach can be involved, no more than four players can be in the facility at one time – the Raptors limit it to one player – and intense security precautions must be taken before, during and after the session. When Donaldson throws a pass to Miller, he does it while wearing a mask and gloves.
Udonis Haslem is one of the Miami players who reportedly returned to work on Day 1 at their facility, even though that was not his main priority. He wore a special mask with the team logo Wednesday morning when he appeared on a food distribution drive which he helped organize near downtown Miami. “Data-reactid =” 29 “> Heat captain Udonis Haslem is one of the Miami players who reportedly returned to work on Day 1 at their facility, even though that was not his main priority. He wore a special mask with the team logo Wednesday morning when he appeared on a food distribution drive which he helped organize near downtown Miami.
“This is the first,” Haslem said on the food drive. “This is the most important. “
Haslem said the training began well, then he began to fade slightly towards the end. Like most NBA players, he has done individual training during the league hiatus but said no one replicated what was needed to undergo training on the field.
Meanwhile, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis let the professional league know that the State of the Sun is ready to welcome them all if needed.
With Orlando often touted as a potential centralized site if the NBA continued playing, and it was one of the sites Silver said to players last weekend that were being considered, DeSantis said on Wednesday that the state gave more value to the value of the sport. professional.
“Professional sports will be welcomed in Florida,” DeSantis said. “That may not be the case in every other state in the country, as we have seen. So what I’m going to tell the league commissioner is, if you have a team in an area where they won’t let them operate, we will find a place for you here in the state of Florida, because we think this is important and we know it can be done with secure. “
Associated Press Writer Ian Harrison in Toronto contributed.
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