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NBA playoffs to reportedly start with play-in tournament on Aug. 16, Finals start on Sept. 30

Assuming all goes well with the modified season restart at Disney World in Orlando, Florida, the NBA Finals will be kicking off on Sept. 30.

The National Basketball Players Association held a call on Monday and revealed several dates for the league’s plan to resume the season after a nearly-three month hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic, according to The Athletic’s Shams Charania

After the end of the modified regular season that is scheduled to start on July 31, the NBA postseason will tentatively use the following schedule:

  • Aug. 16-17: Play-in tournament

  • Aug. 18: First round

  • Sept. 1: Conference semifinals

  • Sept. 15: Conference finals

  • Sept. 30: NBA Finals Game 1

  • Oct. 12: NBA Finals Game 7 (If needed)

The NBA suspended operations on March 11 due to the coronavirus pandemic. The NBPA officially approved the outline of the league’s plan to finish the season in Florida last week, just one day after 29 of the 30 teams voted to approve the plan, too. 

Only 22 teams are included in the plan, the 16 teams already in playoff position and then the six next closest teams. Teams will play two or three exhibition games before the regular season officially resumes at the Orlando campus, and play is expected to continue even if a player tests positive for the coronavirus. There will be testing daily, per reports, and anyone who tests positive will be quarantined for at least seven days.

The NBA draft is currently scheduled to take place on Oct. 15. An official start date for the 2020-21 season has not yet been approved, however it is expected to kick off at some point in December.

There were more than 1.9 million confirmed cases of the coronavirus in the United States as of Monday afternoon, according to The New York Times, and more than 110,000 deaths attributed to it. Florida had nearly 65,000 of those cases, though Orange County — where Disney World is located — had less than 2,400 confirmed cases. 

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