RUMOR: Moving back start of NBA schedule, cutting games could be on table to combat struggling TV ratings
Over the past couple of years, there have been constant debates as to whether or not the NBA should shorten its schedule. And according to Andrew Marchand of the New York Post, the league is starting to consider this idea because it might help them address the struggling TV ratings.
One thought that has been broached in league circles, according to sources, would be to move the start of the schedule back to closer to Thanksgiving or, even more drastically, Christmas, in combination with a potential reduction from 82 games and some sort of in-season tournament.
A target date to institute this new thinking could be 2021-22 when the NBA celebrates its 75th season. It would make sense to potentially move to a 75-game season and introduce the still-to-be-determined tournament at that point.
One of the reasons why the NBA ratings have plummeted is because of season-ending injuries and ‘load management,’ which allows some of the league’s best players to sit out of games in order to rest.
However, the NBA will be facing several issues in shortening the season. Owners and players might not agree with this because this will have a significant impact on their revenue. Moreover, a lot has t0 be considered in terms of adjusting the schedule.
Will the league be fine with starting the season around Christmas time and ending it in June, or will they consider having the Finals around July or August, which is usually when Summer League takes place?
NBA spokesperson Mike Bass has already denied the rumors that league officials are considering the idea of shortening the season, but if the ratings won’t improve, they might have to.