(Photo credit: SportsLogos.net)
The new NBA season saw a lot of changes due to the pandemic. Fewer games, health and safety protocols, back to backs with the same teams, and more. There were a few outbreaks and COVID-19 cases among players and teams, which was anticipated. This season was not going to be like the bubble. Mostly without fans, we expected the NBA to take every step to limit the spread of the virus. The All-Star Game that was set to take place in Indianapolis was cancelled, or so we thought. It seems like the NBA is planning to hold the event in Atlanta on March 7, according to ESPN’s Senior NBA Insider, Adrian Wojnarowski. The significance of the All-Star Game is important, but the risk is higher than the reward. For every argument for the game, there is a counterargument that overweighs it.
“It’s Easier to Monitor Players in One Spot During the Break”
One point that has been brought up is that making sure players are following protocols during the break will be easier if the NBA can keep an eye on them. By keeping all the players in one place, they can isolate themselves in a hotel room and go through daily testing.
Counter: Too Many Players Coming From Different Places
The problem with that argument is that the NBA has already developed these semi-bubbles within teams. Players on each team are only allowed to be in proximity to each other and bringing their best players out of that to participate in a large exhibition game defeats the whole purpose of health and safety protocols. In addition to this, the staff and personnel needed to pull this off involves more unnecessary exposure, so is this really worth it? In the world we are living in right now, probably not.
(Source via Twitter @Rachel__Nichols)
In a new development, Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN gave us travel restrictions for those not participating in the All-Star Game, which is even more unsettling.
“During the All-Star break, players will be allowed to travel in the United States, including Hawaii, the U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico, sources tell ESPN.” -Adrian Wojnarowski
Even though they tried to limit international travel, this doesn’t seem like a better decision. So now, not only do you have multiple players from different teams conglomerating in Atlanta but very few travel restrictions for the rest of the league.
“The All-Star Game is For a Good Cause”
The whole point of the All-Star Game is that it is a fundraiser for a charity that the NBA selects every year. According to CBS Sports, they are raising money for HBCU’s and COVID-19 relief.
Counter: The NBA is Looking For Their Own Moneygrab
As much money as the NBA raises for the game, they also rake in a ton of cash for themselves through TV ratings and sponsors. We all know the NBA has lost money during the pandemic but is risking the health of your star players worth it? The NBA is a business, after all.
(Source via Twitter @AndrewGreif)
Still Not Convinced?
I’m sure a lot of people will disagree with me, and that’s okay too. If anything is going to stick out to you, it should be a lot of high-profile players being against the game. Nevertheless, it will still take place and the second half of the season will still be faced with a lot of cases anyway. I’ll try one last tactic to convince you that the All-Star Game shouldn’t be happening, and it’s a statement from Lebron James himself:
(Source via Twitter @FOS)
And with that, I leave you. Follow the Intermission Sports on Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, all that beautiful stuff. You can also follow me on Twitter @crinamm to hear more of my opinions.