The NBA is Back Baby!!

YouTube

Reece Candler, Staff writer

After a four-month hiatus due to the coronavirus pandemic, the NBA officially returned. From inside the NBA bubble, the Jazz took on the Pelicans and Lakers took on the Clippers. In an ironic twist, Rudy Gobert, who was the first player to test positive for COVID-19 in the NBA, scored the first points of the return. This bubble, formed by the NBA to prevent the spread of the virus, is at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex at Disney World in Orlando, Florida hosts 22 teams. To ensure the safety of the players, the NBA has been testing players regularly. Along with the rigorous testing, if a player leaves the bubble for a personal matter, they must quarantine. Players such as Lou Williams, Zion Williamson, and Montrezl Harrell have all left the bubble and had to quarantine before returning to their teams. Another major topic in the NBA bubble has been social justice. After the killing of George Floyd, many players such as Jaylen Brown and Trae Young participated in protests against racial injustice. Wanting to continue to use their platform to fight for justice, many players continue to bring this injustice to light. The NBA allowed players to wear messages on the back of their jerseys. They also have added Black Lives Matter to the court where NBA games will be played. Along with this, players, coaches, and officials all knelt for the national anthem prior to both games Thursday. The NBA has had to resort to a new format for this resumption of the season. The 22 teams in the bubble will play 8 seeding games to determine the final standings headed into playoffs, which begin on August 17. An interesting quirk of this odd season is that if the 9-seed finishes within 4 games of the 8-seed, a two-game playoff will be played, with the 9-seed having to win both games to make it in. Overall, the rest of the NBA season should be great to watch and should be incredibly interesting to see how the season finishes.