One key issue to consider in the future will be whether the 2020-2021 NBA season overlaps with the Tokyo 2021 Olympics.
Preventing that overlap will be a priority for the NBA, as several players and some coaches will be on teams participating in the Tokyo Olympics or the Olympic Qualifying Tournaments.
One of those coaches is Steve Kerr of the Golden State Warriors who is supposed to be an assistant on Gregg Popovich’s Team USA staff.
Kerr remains in the dark, as he does not have any idea how the schedule will turn out.
“Believe it or not, I haven’t had a single conversation with Pop about that,” Kerr said via Tim Reynolds of The Associated Press. “And the reason is because we don’t know. We’ve been talking almost daily now for the last couple of weeks and before that we were speaking once every few weeks. So, we haven’t even had a single conversation because there’s nothing to report.”
The U.S. is one of eight qualified teams for the 12-team tournament at the Olympics.
FIBA pushed back the dates of the four qualifying tournaments to June 29, 2021 through July 4, 2021.
Toronto Raptors coach Nick Nurse coaches Canada who will be playing in a qualifying tournament, and he hopes the Olympics as well.
Like Kerr, Nurse is also left wondering what will happen next year.
“It’s complicated, is my best thought,” Nurse said. “I just don’t know enough to tell you what next season is going to look like. I don’t know. When’s it going to start? I think they’re talking about pushing it back, but I don’t know if they’re going to play games closer together. I don’t think so, that’s kind of a thing that everybody’s been happy that they continue to spread them out and lessen the back-to-backs and all those things.”
“But if they do that, then it’s probably going to run into the Olympics, or really close to it, right? Lots of things that I don’t have a crystal ball on,” Nurse added.
The NBA has discussed a possible condensed 2020-2021 season.
A potential timeline similar to this season could lead to next year’s NBA Finals being played around July 31, 2021 when the Olympics is set to begin on July 23, 2021.
“We’re just sort of waiting to hear what the news is,” Kerr said. “If the news is good and we’re going to be able to take part, we’ll be ready to roll. And if not, we’ll deal with it later.”