While the NBA is reportedly sorting out its plans to relaunch this season at the specified bubble location, teams like the Boston Celtics are looking for ways to ease their transition back.
Had been widely reported that the league targets June 1 as a date for players to return to their markets before stepping up individual training and eventually developing into formal training camps. The Celtics, among other teams such as the New York Knicks and Toronto Raptors, sought to bypass their return and head straight for the bubble location (most likely Orlando, Fla.), according to ESPN Adrian Wojnarowski.
The majority of Boston’s listings have left the city during the coronavirus pandemic, which means they need to be quarantined for up to 14 days after they return before they start group training at the Auerbach Center. While many teams have begun individual training with various health regulations, the Celtics have not yet reopened their facilities. Boston, as well as the entire state of Massachusetts, continues to adhere to the policy of staying at home.
The Celtics asking to bypass back to Boston for players outside the market makes sense. Sending players directly to Orlando will avoid a back-to-back quarantine period for most Celtics lists. Kemba Walker, Jayson Tatum, Marcus Smart, Grant Williams, Robert Williams and many others must be quarantined twice. Why make it quarantine once in Boston and once in Orlando?
According to Wojnarowski’s report, the NBA has told the Celtics, Knicks, and Raptor that they “plan to work with them on a solution that might include directing several teams directly to campus / sitting bubbles rather than team facilities to hold training camps.” Doing this will simplify matters for the Celtics and travel personnel.
In addition, Boston established a temporary training camp at Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando that would allow the Celtics to become accustomed to the new environment. These additional benefits can be very beneficial, especially because the rest of the season will be spent in that arrangement.
Fixed schedule structure in the air. Will this be a regular season for teams adjusted to 30 teams? Or will the NBA finally decide to head straight for the postseason? Luckily for a team like the Celtics and the Raptors, that didn’t matter. They are locked into the playoffs, meaning that any format will include them.
Regardless of what the league decides, players who come out of the market back to the currently restricted Boston environment are a rough formula for the Celtics. Heading straight to Orlando, on the other hand, certainly benefited them. Boston, like other teams, is good at pushing for that solution.
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