It’s been nearly a month since the NBA suspended their season after Rudy Gobert tested positive for the coronavirus, and no one knows when there will be games again. In fact, during an interview on Monday, commissioner Adam Silver said the league won’t even be able to make any further decisions .
Just like the rest of us, players have been left in a state of limbo, as they try to prepare for all sorts of different scenarios. They obviously want to get back on the court as soon as possible, especially those that had a chance at competing for a title. But at the same time, they recognize the reality, which is that everyone needs to stay safe.
In a conference call on Wednesday, Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James spoke about those conflicting ideas and another of other topics — including the hit documentary series Tiger King. While he obviously thought the Lakers were in position to challenge for a title — so did everyone else — perhaps the most interesting thing LeBron said was about how he’ll feel if there are no more games.
“I don’t think I would be able to have any closure if we did not have an opportunity to finish the season,” LeBron said.
Given that there’s been an NBA champion every year since 1947, this really is a brand new issue. There have been plenty of years where injuries or bad calls or other factors have made you wonder “what if?” but nothing to this extent; at least in those cases there was still always a winner.
If the season ends up getting shut down completely, there will be no way to know how things would have played out. And while that’s too bad for fans and media, it’s even worse for the players. We could still argue and debate and come up with simulations to try and imagine the outcomes, and at the end of the day this is just entertainment for us.
For the players, it’s their entire lives. Everything they do every single day is with one goal in mind: winning a title. To have that taken away by something completely out of their control would be a real punch to the gut.