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Rachel Nichols and Bobby Marks


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It's quick and easy to join. Just download the free APP or go to make it count dot com slash radio and start saving today. This offers valid only participating marathon stations. Remember wherever you need to be safe the people at marathoner behind you all the way everyone welcome in to another edition of the pot here with Rachel Nichols in Bobby Marks Rachel. The host of the jump every day on. Espn Saturday night. Jump if we ever get another fan. Forget James Gadsden billing and and of course what is it a fourth grade teacher now right. Is it a fourth grade grade. Yeah but you know I feel. I don't know if I feel for the parents who have kids in high school because that's a level of math. I no longer understand I did once not anymore or the the people have kids in kindergarten because that is a whole separate challenge to I know from my friends. At the aggregates bobby marks are front office insider. Who's For him fortunate to be married married to a teacher certainly paying some dividends and the marks household these days. You're right but I did have fifth grade math. I think the first day of we were quarantined. And as I said before I can figure out the salary cat revenue sharing. I couldn't figure at decimals. It's not me I had to pass. Bobby told me one of the best stories of of their quarantine. At Bobby's wife Michelle's teacher and and I think one of your son's is in her school. Right IS YEAH. Kupfer's in fifth grade were there and somebody called the house to like for Cooper to play video games or something and he got chastise. Is that what happened? Well because my wife has first war and he didn't show up for class three days in a row so he's calling the house one of the play. Were Nice been you can use a notion. Senator Burton NARC. That is great. That is great. Well guys a lot you know really. I think as an eventful of a day. We've had in some wild on Friday in terms of these hiatus and trying to get a sense of of how the league will proceed how it might proceed in Rachel I talked about this a little bit offline. But we're the league went to in the last twenty four hours on a players if you wanted some reasons to believe that if you wanted more reason to believe that the League is really carving a pathway toward coming back whether that's in June or July the fact that number one the League decided to allow teams to test players coming into their facilities in marketplaces like Orlando Los Angeles where it met the threshold of a league. The League saying that local healthcare workers had adequate testing not the general population. Although I think the organizations in those places were using. The general population is a barometer. That like everybody in La who wants to test. According to the mayor can get corona virus tests than Orlando similar edict. Their Number One. That tells you something about hardly feels about using tests on players and then from my reporting on Adam Silver caught with the players association on Friday. Night the fact that atom said there that he believed by the time the League was ready to return to play. would be ready return to play that there would be enough testing in this country and then obviously in. Toronto in Canada as part of North America that he had confidence it would be enough testing that the NBA would be They'd feel comfortable with going forward. And I think guys those two backs tell you. Those are two hurdles. I think for the League and I'm not saying they're going to come back but but but that's I think that's a big part of the equation. The testing story. You had yes You had on Friday. Whoa J- I thought was so interesting because of the language in the word great Your report from just a week earlier had talked about how they wanted to wait for public. Testing right. Didn't want to gobble up public test. I think was one of the scents is you had a this memo on. Friday was very different right. Frontline healthcare workers that is a huge distinction on whether tests are available in someone's community because testing in this country according to the people testifying in Congress just isn't where it needs to be at this up Right now the US as we record this podcast testing two hundred sixty four thousand people a day And there was a congressional testimony just this week saying that it needs to be at about half a million a day a three or four million a week To have the kind of public testing that these experts who are testifying recommend and the idea of getting from that aid to that be. There isn't a path for that right now so when Adam had been hinging for the NBA on public universal testing. It was hard to see when or where that would happen. And if the switch has been to we can do this once. There is frontline healthcare worker testing. And then we feel comfortable that we can have some private testing. That's a different. That's a different bar. Right absolutely bobby to that point too with the League. I think the testing is that one issue that Rachel's detailing but the other questions going to be about coming back or or certainly one of the major questions is going to be. What is the risk that the league the players are willing to take? What is the risk? They're willing to live with. And Adam silver set it on the call with players yesterday not just the risk of living in isolation but deliver the risk of living day to day and the players in the league and the owners have to answer that question before they come back and and that's probably the greatest that's probably the most difficult question of all. Because will the wrist be any different in July that it's going to be in December if there's a second wave if the opening up of states results in spikes and the numbers don't go down will the risk be different then at some point? You say as a business. How are we going to go forward here want it? And I think the one thing that the commissioner said on the call regarding risk all there's also that mental risk right like if you don't go back to work. There is the mental side of it where people are going to lose jobs. The economy will continue to to suffer here. The big thing that we've we've talked about a leak is tolerance. What is our tolerance going to be to To the risk factor here. Where if a player knows that You know one of my teammates possibly to remind teammates. Are we going to want to proceed ahead? I think the big thing was that we kind of learn from the call was that what happens if a player casts positive. Does that mean that we shut down altogether air? I think the if there's testing in plays I don't I think the player recording team but I don't think we shut down as a league in in total here where things can go on a big. If it question will be what happens if there's a domino effect here right. What happens if we get three players or four players? What happens if God forbid we get to an NBA finals? Lebron James Right like all those different scenarios I think we all have to factor factor in but as as both of you said testing. Is The big part here. Get that issue saw and then we can kind of move forward but I think the one thing that if you're looking from a hope standpoint from the call us at least we have a little bit of structure that we know what's going to happen right. We know might take three to six weeks to get training camp together. We know that the League is willing to play into September. We know that December is a possibility there so from from where we were two weeks ago waiting and information right at least that we can take from that call with the protocol that that silver was telling the players was the idea that if a player does test positive that that player would be removed. Right would be quarantined and that possibly they would have a one or two day stoppage to test everyone more thoroughly again and make sure that it wasn't spreading but then they would resume play and I assume. Bobby in your scenario that player is kind of treated as if he has an injury right. I mean you can have a quirk injury. We saw it in the NBA finals with several members of the Golden State Warriors and. They are plucked and removed from the finals. Or whatever stage of the playoffs? There at but again they're talking about and he was saying on the call that he expected a level of testing in the coming months that just as a private citizen Reading The Times and The Washington Post I have not seen yet the indications for an obviously the Nba has access to medical experts. That we don't have but he was talking about testing people on a daily or every day basis. That's not just the number of test kits that you might be able to buy from for private source so you're not taking away from the public but then those tests kids have to be processed right now. A lot of the corona virus tests that people are using those nasal swabs and those take at best several hours to get processed. So are you letting those players than go to their morning shootaround or morning practice when they wake up and get tested in the morning They're certainly hope for an antigen finger prick test But again that's a level of testing that Adam seem to be talking about is if they were expecting in the coming months I certainly hope that's true. But that's a big thing to be hinging on it as much as anything. This is a listen. There's an ethical question here There's a a practical question here with test and then there's a PR question of. What is the what is the? What are the optics for the League? If there are still people in places who are struggling to get tests in the league is just plowing through those day after day in some isolated bobble monotonous remember. It's not just the players. It's the stabs it's if they're in an isolated hypothetically if they're in Walt Disneyworld or of there in Orlando there in Vegas you'd have hotel workers and food services workers in tech people and any all the people it would take to put on the NBA. They'd all have to be tested and reported back a couple of weeks ago. I don't maybe it was a couple months ago. I lose track of whatever Anything's happened but fifteen thousand tests is what the League estimated it would take in an isolated environment to finish the season and they know they can easily get those tests. They have many many factories who could provide it for them. That's not the issue and so Yeah that that's that's a big big hurdle for the league that's again that's the PR angle that. I was really interested in your reporting on Friday because when you made the initial report it was we. Won't we would not feel comfortable testing our players with regularity? If the public doesn't have access to test and then on Friday it was will a frontline. Healthcare workers don't have access to test. That's different Barin Standard and I'm not saying one is right or wrong but they've been far lower San far lower frame rates so that that may be indicates that they feel PR wise. Oh if that's the bar that will get us you know smoothly through the Pr Hump as opposed to having to wait for entire the entire country to publicly said but but let's also to be fair when you think of the numbers of people right now. That team would be testing. It's very low at the most. It could be fifteen players. We don't have fifteen players going in every facility and we know they can only have four coaches in a facility at any one time so any one team in one region of the country might in a given day or a week. It's not very many tests and so that's purely optical absolutely one thing to regarding testing and if we do see players has positive In a playoff series of the one thing that when you talk teams that are pushing for is to now have to way contracts available. The guys who are onto a contracts are part of your roster Tim Playoffs which is a Ability Right now so your roster goes from fifteen to seventeen so at least it gives you two more bodies You don't win you. Maybe if you get three guys tents godforsaken our test positive here. Not something that teams I know are going to push for for a two thousand twenty twenty one. Not The two ways. But can we expand the roster fifteen to seventy in also have two way players here where it's it's players on a one year non guaranteed contract It's almost like an. It's an insurance policy here. Because as the commissioner said this the virus before we have back seen the virus is going to be here so when we get playing in November or December. The risk is going to be they're also Comparable to what it's going to be in June or July with real guidance in the right coach. Nba teams go from good to great just like real help from your state. Farm agent can make all the difference and protecting what matters most and let's talk about what are the great coaches in NBA history. One of the most impactful on those platform those who became coaches from his inspiration. Red Holzman the legendary New York Knicks coach. Who Fifty years ago this week? Nineteen seventy helped. The Knicks. Beat the Lakers in the NBA finals for their first championship. He'd go onto win another championship. In nineteen seventy three. And you look at Phil Jackson who is much as anything disciple of Red Holzman to go on and take a lot of what red preached which was really giving your players great autonomy letting them figure out problems amongst each other and building real relationships with his players. There's no Phil Jackson without Red Holzman and longtime knick fans will tell you it's been done in New York it can be done in New York and no one did better than a great red holzman so talk to state farm agent today about combining your home and auto insurance and get a teammate. Who can help guide you through whatever life throws your way when you want the real deal? A good neighbor state farm is there. Let's start to kind of play out one Return to play might look like the season. Adam. Silver told the players that he would like to have not a shortened postseason. Best Five in the first round or a best of three than a best of five in two seven game series that he wants to have a full full playoff scenario. Best of seven series ideally and to do that. Listen there's only so many days they're going to have to play. And so if you want to try to put as much legitimacy as you can on a champion than on the front end which would be comedy regular season. Games might be played or a play tournament and when you talk to teams there's been an and atom didn't rule it out with the players on the idea of some kind of a play in tournament because right now the the eighth seeds in each conference are you're not gonna catch either of them especially if you're only going to play a few games before the playoffs the is not gonNA get caught but you've got incentivize for these other teams to go through training camp to put players out on the floor. I've had a number of teams. Tell me who are in that nine to ten eleven range. They're going to be more motivated to play their key players. If there's a chance they can get into the post season and I think that's what we're going to start to see a lot of people aren't going to get. It's not gonNA feel fair. It's not going to be what they want. And it's going to be Adam sober to sal. Everybody which is what he's been trying to do through this on the greater good of the NBA. Like for owners. This may not be good financially for you to have to play these games because you're not getting gate receipts your team's not in the playoffs and you guys in the Senate Seats Dallas and your Memphis you. Have you have thoroughly outplayed? Those teams are outside the playoff picture. And it doesn't feel fair that you can lose it in just a couple of days and they could gain in a couple of days but those are all the questions like that again. It gets back to the idea of the best of a lot about ideas. I think though it's an easier sell two teams in that eight. Who feel like man. We just deserve this outright than it would be if you were talking about the top seeds because realistically there's only one year in NBA history. Right where the she has made the finals. So the idea that. Oh if you're in the AFC you could have had the this year but you're going to get knocked out from a plan tournament and that's not fair and you would have been in an eight versus one you pro. I mean the statistical likelihood is better no matter how plucky everyone is that eight seed. They would have been eliminated after the first round so even though it is not fair maybe this year to have a plane tournament when you would have won that. Eight seed outright. You're talking about Uber. Take One playoff round as opposed to give or take of much chances of a title. I feel like maybe that's an easier. Sell two teams but I. I don't know I would say the counter to that. Rachel's if you looked at let's use the example of the NCAA basketball tournament right like the eleventh or twelfth seed knows. They're not going to the final four or they're fairly confident they're not but if you say hey we're not gonna put you in the NCAA. But I do think that's but it gets but you're right right so they're not GonNa win and it is in the end. Who Cares but I do think that's what's GonNa come back to this over and over. There are GONNA be a lot of scenarios and this is going to be Adam silver's job with the owners with his players. He's got sell them on the greater good and the importance of creating some interest doesn't play in tournament was probably coming in next season anyway The owners were getting ready to vote on it. That was the one you know. Some of the players Chris. Paul was not really. I talked to Chris Paul about that a couple years ago when the idea was first coming up he didn't love the idea and there are a lot of players who felt that way. Hey we earned our way in the playoffs. We did it over. Eighty two games like somebody should be able to jump in the league saying. Hey we've got a. We've got a drive. More interest in this thing and driving interests will be a big part of any return to play while I think the enrich the interesting thing. Is You know they'll be training camp of three to five weeks. A month may be but what happens from training camp to the playoffs right. What is that in between layer? If you are the Lakers for example are you going to allow them to jump into the playoffs? I is going to be some games before that. Is it fair to them that they will play the winner of Memphis verse? New Orleans were those teams of hardy. Played Games before where you actually played at series here. So I think that's going to be doing. Is there a your bring back all thirty teams to play or regular season games at the end of You know at the end of at the end of the regular season here. I think that's going to be the big part. As far as is that you know that next layer in between phase will the stakes are so different for every team right now this to me some of the most disparate situations we've seen among NBA teams in a really long time and was to your point teams that are completely out of it like the warriors? Mathematically statistically out of it we've discussed a lot in the past few weeks they have almost no incentive to play other than for that quote greater good being good team players that kind of thing whereas team like the Lakers you mentioned bobby has completely wildly different incentive not just because their title contenders not just because of the marketing and their deal with their local TV provider. Were if they hit that. Seventy Games work and all that stuff. But because they're one of their star players is at an age where this season is more valuable to him. The next season right. He's going to be thirty six next season so not as valuable as season so to them their incentive to get something this summer is maybe even greater than say the bucks right who hopefully they're hoping have centered. Kubo for years to come so it the sense what you had in your story a week ago. Where you cited general manager saying it's hard to lead by consensus in a crisis has stuck with me ever since that article because I think that it is one of the biggest challenges facing the NBA. And Bobby you can give us insight into this in my mind. I'm imagining every front office. Every owner having wildly different needs in wants here in pushing for wildly different things. And that's got to be true on the players side as well. You're right I mean it's interesting because Joe Side the owner of the nets was on a a Stanford Business Conference with some students in any basically said he didn't want to fully Say but you talked about thirty honors. Everyone has a difference of opinion as far as the top eight. WanNa start playing. Well maybe teams Thirteen fifteen see. WanNa get going for focus on the draft. It's that were they're gearing towards so you're right but I do think you know Bob Myers came out yesterday. Guess there they were sent like. Hey we will be good partners here right like we if you tell us. The comeback and play three or four regular season. Games are fifteen regular season game. We will be back. We will be there yet. I I think for the players that listen. There's financial incentive for every player to play as many regular season games as I can to to get their money because whatever games are cancelled the NBA's go to invoke force majeure which basically allows teams to take back about one percent of your salary for each game missed and I've heard discussions among teams of. Should we have a scenario where we just do a play in tournament of seven through twelve and the rest of the teams we tell them to pack it in we tell? Atlanta GOLDEN STATE CLEVELAND. You guys are and we'll share the money that they would have to create some share of revenue to compensate like. I don't imagine that happening and I don't know that Adam Silver's even considering it but I know in front offices when people are bouncing around ideas that's been a conversation. This tolerance of risking to bobby mentioned I think is the other sort of third rail sideline issue of getting players at a point where they are comfortable with the level of risk involved. And it's such an interesting thing for the entire country right is not just. Nba Players. Every time you drive down a highway you are taking a risk and obviously I'm not equating highway deaths with corona virus because highway deaths are not contagious but it is an example of assumed risk in this country. If we just shut down the highway system in this country tens of thousands of lives would be saved. People would never drive more than forty over forty five miles an hour but we have decided over time as a country. There is an acceptable tolerance of risk. And you are trusting. The people driving speeding hurtling toward you. The other way and we saw so tragically Monty Williams a few years ago. His wife died because they're distracted driver driving sixty miles an hour the other direction and killed her and mark. Cuban came out this week and he said players have to decide with corona virus. Who are they trusting with their lives or they trusting the person at the hotel or they trusting? Who Do you trust with your life? That is the question and it is. It's very dramatic for market. Taught that way and it feels very dramatic as we sit here and try to make these decisions from scratch. Nobody told the entire country to decide from scratch in one month okay. How many people do we feel comfortable with dying on a highway this month? No one ever had to make that decision. Just kind of evolved and that's how we have a comfort level with risk. We are being asked to make that decision all at once here with corona virus. And I think that is very difficult for people to do even if they are regularly taking other risks in their daily life. It's hard to unilaterally. Say great were fine with X. Many thousand people buying it should be hard that that that's not a natural thing to want to do and yet there is some element of that equation. Is Adam stressed on the call with the players? There is no zero risk situation here. The only way to zero risk situation is to just shut down each other's vaccine and that's just not something they're looking at right now and and Adam silver talking to the players yesterday. There's going to have to be a lot of cooperation trust. There's GonNa be some some very difficult negotiations that will go on because they've got to collectively bargain almost any of the changes. That would come whether it's going to a one or two site bubble or pushing the start of next season to December regardless of whether they play or not Any number of things have to be agreed upon with the players. And then there's going to be like real financial realities in bobby paint. The picture for people of what Free Agency is going to look like How the salary cap is going to impact. What the not just free agency how. It's going to impact the draft going into next season and and what players can expect to see. I think the the commissioner painted outward. It's basically going to be two years of negotiating. Cba crammed into too much right. I mean that's that's the reality of it in. Its you know so you look at it a lot of ways and I think the big question. What is the salary cap into? What is the luxury tax going to be in the equal? The easy answer would be if we go by the letter of the CBI. The salary cap in luxury tax is going to crash right. It's going to go from a project that one hundred and fifteen fifty million dollar cash to ninety ninety five million the luxury tax in teams instead of four teams luxury tax. We're going to have twenty teams in here. So that is going to be a big thing to work on. Because the commissioner said forty percent comes from fans gate receipts here so had elite projects. The salary cap. Is You take the beer. I from the current season so this would be night the B. R. is the basketball related companies. Which is what that's what the owners players share in a in a given financial year right. Yeah and for this year we were leaving projecting PRI. I'd be at eight billion dollars okay. We are projecting potentially could be at six billion dollars. So there's a two billion dollar loss so by the letter of the CBI you take that six billion you project it out and that would give you your indicator for two thousand twenty twenty one and that number comes in like ninety four million. It's comparable to two thousand sixteen seventeen three or four years ago. But that can't be right. Because you need as the commissioner said like we need a competitive bouncier here so all. Those teams would cafes. There'd be nobody Luxury tax teams would be swimming in finances ended. What happens when we do get some type of sense of normalcy two years from now or even a year from now the salary cap all of a sudden go from ninety five to one hundred twenty five hundred thirty and now? We're looking at the summer of two thousand rainy get another aspect which which clearly was not did not help competitive balance in the NBA. There is so when he says the system wasn't set up for the mechanics. That's why the system wasn't set. Because you have revenue Kate Starre a decline seep in of a sudden a year and a half now. I mean. Eventually we're going eventually. We're going to get back to hopefully a healthy business model right but it's probably going to be a year and a half from now in you talk to teams and they are. Well I the League Anything yet I mean I think it they want to get through this right. We gotta get set the schedule If we're going to play but you talk to teams in Kansas League. There are a lot of different things. Teams were want. How have we address it? Maybe the salary cap is ninety. Five million maybe now player salaries are percentage of the salary cap so I saw giving example. This is what he wants. He said to me if you look at Golden State and a player like Steph. Curry next year is going to make forty. Two million dollars will steph. Curry would still make forty two million dollars mainly maybe for salary cap purposes salaries. Thirty five million dollars right and we decrease in the numbers. Go down where yes. The warriors are still being a luxury tax but that it would be comparable to what the CAP would have been And I think a lot of things like that are going to be thrown around. I need you talk team saying you know maybe we get rid of the luxury tax. Maybe we get rid of. May We go back to a dollar for dollar I think the one we're we're gonNA heat is going to be thrown around is the infamous tax meeting right thousand sixteen when nobody wanted to order. That cats moving is going to be on the table here so There is so much negotiations that are going to have to take place. I think it would be premature as the cavs going to be hundred million dollars. Because WE'RE GONNA lose to billy. I don't know that's going to be the case One thing I do think will happen is that we might see player escrow Claire Skin ten percent taken either pay at the beginning of the year. 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This is Scott Yard. Also Scott's no quibble money-back guarantee states. If you're not satisfied you get your money back. This is a scots yard. What can I ask you in your in your reporting and all the people that you do does the timing Jive to you because one thing that Adam said to the players on the call was. We don't have to make a decision in May. We don't even have to make a decision by early June. And I'm listening to Bobby. Run through all of these gymnastics and I think he's very kindly. Simplifying them for the purpose of this discussion. But that we're talking about what sounds in my head like yes. Robbie two months of negotiations at best right. And don't they have to have those negotiations done by the time they bring everyone back? So addition to figuring out the testing issue figuring out where they're going to play. I can't wait to see which players would rather be in. Orlando near Disneyworld. Would you rather compared to wish? Flairs would rather be in Las Vegas. That's going to be a humorous EIBAR Depending on what? Your vice is And all the other complications that go with figuring this out if Adam silver says hey. We don't have to make a decision now. We have to make decision in early June. How do they see the timing working out wo Jr so they actually get a season in before Thanksgiving well? That's their willingness. A few weeks ago or a month ago I had been reporting that they they're hopeless to have it wrapped up by Labor Day weekend that they wanted to be done before. Football started if if indeed. Football's GONNA start then but they become an that was wishful. It wasn't a hard deadline and the they're willing to go especially because there's such momentum towards starting the season mid to late December regardless of whether they played on pushing that back and then getting on a calendar that takes next season into August. Your power long would have to be that gives them more leeway here to delay and hold often. The Players Association told their players when they agreed to basically almost a second escrow of with the force majeure basically they were gonNA take a little withhold players money so that if games are cancelled which we we know they'll be regular see. Some regular games would be cancelled and the owners take that money back that the players did have to give it all at once that they told the players then we will know we believe we will know by June fifteenth and that was a little bit of an estimate. I think that's I can't imagine a scenario where we're in the middle of June and they haven't set guys were were. Were GonNA Open Up If you decided on June first opened up training camps you're not opening them up on June second and so it's GonNa take a little time to get them open. How long are they going to be? I think they're not going to be six weeks or not. Going to be five weeks and I think Adam put three to six weeks. I think three is the minimum Chris. Paul talked about at least three weeks of and I. I would be shocked if it was more than I think what they'll end up saying is hey. We opened up the facilities. You guys are getting back into it. Counts for some pain and so it but but Rachel you're right like I think they can get the season going to finish and resume it right bobby without needing to have next year salary cap because you pushed it back to the autumn. Let's let's say the draft and free agency are going to be at that point October and we know we're not I mean. They haven't cancelled the draft on June twenty fifth yet. it's coming. They're going to push that date back by all indications and so And if you're pushing the draft back you're putting free agency back with that. Buys THEM TIME RIGHT BOBBY? Yeah I mean I think I think when you look at it of course the cleanest way to look at it right would be. Yeah we get through. All the finals would be mid August right drafts. The end of August basically just pushing in September first agency starts right. We're just me basically pushed the counterbalance. The draft agencies have free agency. I'm GONNA have like a pig by on line. Maybe we should be. Hey I'm all for the draft at July September eighth and start creating see right after but what you could also look at it too is that you know you could use that. September October months to negotiate. As far as what? This is going to look like. Cb wise remember back in two thousand eleven when we had the lockout the lockout was lifted on December. Nine I believe in. We had ten days. Afraid Statements Days afraid with a new with the new. Cba in the game started like December. Twenty third two. Preseason games in the Games are so. You could potentially do that knowing that. Hey it's a there's not many teams cafes already it's an hour free agent class at S. You know your windows creative. He starts December first. And that leads you up to training camp. You'll be feeling garages or training camp. I think I think the interesting thing Rachel is that you have so many team. You'll have fourteen teams have done anything right. Probably like for nine months so you go from mid March to mid early December of not doing anything at all so you bring it back for voluntary many can you go the NFL route. So I think there's so many different things that are going to have to work out But yeah just because the season ends in day doesn't I don't think it guarantees you that you start Two weeks later because there are so many issues here do you think. Do you guys think that if they do start next season on Christmas Day. Let's just say they would go all the way through August and try to have the two game season or like with so many other things we're discussing this is an opportunity for them to with the shorten calendar. No I think Rachel I think there is more than ever movement. The play eighty two games next year. Because what a shortened schedule does too is. It means less rapid-fire they're GONNA play every game they can't. I think the pushing it back into the summer gives them more than anything a chance to have more dates in the year with a better chance of having fans in arenas that if you're starting that season October normally even at this season got cancelled or the rest of I got canceled. You have. I think the feeling is we're GONNA have less of a chance to have fans in arenas in October now. Maybe who knows whether we could even have them in December but by the time we get February and March where you played fewer games. Maybe by then there's still scheduling. You're starting to get fans in and and I think that's a that's the biggest part of this. I hear less concern among teams and owners about what happens to the rest of this year. Take away the two or three or four teams to think they can win a championship but most of the League and I think even the players association's really focused on what is next year. Look like because next year if you are limited in certain it what what if there's arenas jurisdictions where they said. We're not going to have these gatherings yet. Having fans but teams other markets we can. We're GONNA FILL OUR RENO. You're GONNA wear masks. Whatever it's going to look like the disparity and revenue. How DOES THAT TEAM COMPETE? Where the owner owns the arena. He not only you have not fan. He doesn't have answer basketball team. He doesn't have fans for his. Nhl T. More. He has concert dates in an arena. And that guy's going to compete with the bomber or he's going to compete with the Lakers or he's going to compete with Jim Dolan financially. Probably not and I think that's the big concern for the League is trying to figure out what it looks like because that will change in an Adam silver set this on the call yesterday that the CBA was not meant to withstand a pandemic. It's a it's a document. It's an agreement because this is a balance of of revenue that is shared among the players and owners and then all hell breaks loose in the League next season whether it doesn't have to be all the arenas empty all you need are seven or eight teams who can't put people in the arena. And or less than that. And what? How does the League MIC provisions for that? There's also the factor that they've had declining television ratings for the last year before any of this happened right so and and there was a lot of talk about how to use stem the tide of younger fans who are going to other sports video games or any of that stuff and Adam talked about this on the call yesterday with the players about you know. How do we engage fans with different styles of broadcasts or things like that That's sort of a factor. We're not addressing with. Do they play out the season? Or don't they play out the season or what does it look like because there's so much logistical and health and safety and more pressing issues but once you peel back to fantasy layer of fan interest If they go this entire calendar year and don't play anymore basketball and then start just at Christmas and in the meantime you do have other sports because they are sports that involve less contact. Nascar is starting this week because it's cars drivers in their cars. And yes there's pickers but there's is a much different level of contact. Golf is starting in two weeks because it's a guy two thousand yards from his closest competitor. You have other sports that might be taking bites out of their market share and then when you talk about fans coming back or other streams of revenue happening once even get to twenty twenty one the option that the public interest is going to be there at the same level when making those calculations using twenty nine thousand nine hundred twenty twenty twenty. Eighteen numbers of this is what we expect our fan revenue to be. I wonder if there is thought or calculation of. Hey one of the factors we have to think about when making the decision about finishing out the rest of the twenty twenty season is just keeping up that fan engagement to the point where you can even have fans in the building yet because you need fans to still even once the permission is there you need them to buy tickets and go sit in the building. Won't you bring up a number of great points Rachel Number? One like look at the TV ratings and why they were down this season that we can all point to a number of reasons like the twenty five fifteen to twenty five the numbers you know severely drop we know those those fans are consuming the NBA. But they're not watching it on television the way the three of us might watch it tonight. They're on their phones. I see it in my own house. Like THEY'RE GONNA. Watch it on their phone they're gonNA watch it Streaming and so the NBA will account for that and the broadcast hours walkout for that next TV deal wherever the viewers are is what they'll monetize. That's not a concern but what was a concern this year. Right was was injuries to star players. Now steph curry your because he landed on his hand and broke his hand. There's nothing you can do about that. But what about in a shortened pre season? I know they're thinking about this if you really WanNa hurt. Tv ratings next year. Let's rush everybody back the season. Let's get key players injured in now. Have to hold them off. Have their starts? Pushback may guys Kevin Durant not coming back to the nets this year. That's not happening. If they played they're not playing and But but Rachel the the idea about an atom sober talked about it on the call and I we've reported about this this is a chance for the NBA. I think reshape how it looks on television. And and even a bubble environment where there's no fans and you've got to talk about creating unique camera angles and sight lines. Use spend a lot of time thinking about how the sport looks on TV. And how you deliver it to an audience. What would you do Rachel if you could? Innovate with how the game. Experience is brought the fans. What what would you like to see? This is something you'd have to get buy in from from the players but maybe an economic crisis situation would spur more of it One of the directions that people like your teenage kids are they both teenagers. Only one of them still teenager a mature prematurely age your children but but one of the things that they're so used to in their world is almost twenty four seven access to the athletes and stars and celebrities that they like right in the palm of their hand in their home. Kim Kardashian or Lebron James have basically given them a seat at their dinner table right Lebron James Taco Tuesday. Come hang out with my daughter while she dances on tick tock or whatever it That intimacy with celebrities and players is something that people of that age kind of expect but we're not delivering on our TV broadcast. Most players. Don't WANNA be miked during a game. It's battle right and you can only made Mike. The coach or anything like that in game interviews. We certainly see the Gregg Popovich. The world dismissed and players used to do interviews after halftime. We have that interview after halftime going Locker Room and some local broadcasts. They'll have deals where they do that. But that's largely fallen away from national broadcast and I don't know if more access to players with camera angles like bench cam right guys talking about or doing on the bench guys you would absolutely and do right and and having guys Mike Morin having that access and locker room. What's the Locker Room Cam? Right we see this the march madness tournament and certainly we get little bits of it in the NBA. Sometimes they'll have a video. That goes through by the way seven sensors before it gets to TV and the NBA. And that's another layer. That would have to be more comfortable Even those miked up segments that we have broadcast right now I can tell you from being a sideline reporter that we hear those mics and the the fact that day then go through there's an NBA person for works for the League in the truck watching those and listening to those as they come in and being the arbiter of okay'd are we comfortable with our coaches comfortable with our teams. Be Comfortable with this being on the air and right now. The bar is extremely high. Most of the stuff is deemed not acceptable and that is why on TV. You mostly get like all right guys. Hurry up we gotta be tough here because you're not getting different. Get back get back in transition is heading thing salacious thing. I think when you asked me what would I recommend or what do I think? I think that there is a level. I think the players in the league if they really want to get to what will interest people of a certain age who on their phones have access to a sitting at the dinner table with Lebron James. I think that that's it and I don't know how comfortable when they're talking about. Oh we're going to put new camera angles in. They tried an overhead. That overhead side shot this year with one of the broadcast. That's not what people are looking for. They're not looking for like. Oh what's another Skycam? I think that My opinion is that you want a level of intimacy that they're already getting in so many other places and I think that will an adjustment for the NBA players in for the League itself on being comfortable with allowing that but to me. That is my opinion of where it would have to go. Bobby all things. Rachel described there and allowing changes of that nature. Where what pockets of the League? Would you imagine? What have the greatest resistance to to what Rachel described might better appeal to a younger fan base right in the situation? We're in right now where I think everything's on the table right like I think the day in age of you know like I think we were forced to change this pandemic has made. It's forcing us to change in forcing us to get out of our comfort. When I think I think Rachel hit hits home I think you know when you look back on what has happened with the NFL draft right the NFL draft three days made you feel like you were part of the Front Office of the New York jets. 'cause you were inside his wanted to be part of not bobby but but in in you know and then you have you know like there was a great video of John. Horrible in their general manager right like you felt like you were part of that and I think that's what the viewer is going to want to be like whether it'd be the playoffs whether it be the draft whether it be you drive along with Brian James to a game right in the car. I mean who knows if it's going to be a bubble scenario but you are off. You're part of their life to to an extent here and I think I think the players that changed everything is going to be on the table and I think that includes potentially the draft right if there is a window to switch the draft to to act a free agency starts like. Here's your window to go do it. Here's the do it so you won't have to wait three weeks for Anthony. Davis trade in the night of the draft. Got Six guys halftime at Saint. Like if you're going to do it now it's almost like when you get hired a job right when you get hired a job you have carte blanche who you. WanNa bring with you. How much money you want to spend. You want a new desk. You'll get but two years from now. You're not going to be able to go. Buy that new desks. Maybe your budget smaller but I think everything Yeah they'll be some resistance but I think everything will be on the on the table right. Now that I think that Adam Silver's power is immense in this scenario partly because of his role as commissioner and the weight the position carries but also because I feel as though while different constituencies can disagree or feel like I. Adam is favoring this group over Mike Group in the end. I do sense this that there is a lot of trust in him and belief in him that ultimately if you just tell us what the plan is if you tell us what direction we're going will fall into line within within most margins like we're gonNA fall into line and I think it's GonNa come to a point where he's going to come to everybody and say on a number of levels what the rest of this season loves like how you're going to deal with schedule and Future Television Any number of And then ultimately safety. What that that. There's gotTa be a trust that you you're putting your health in the hands of Team and vice versa and I think Adam's role in this in the end is is going to be immense to in unique. Listen to him on call. The players like he made the players feel part in any senate. This is not gonNA be in Adam Silver decision. It's not going to be a Michelle Roberts decision. It's going to be a decision for all you know. All THIRTY TEAMS ALL THIRTY OWNERS. All four hundred plus plus players here. But don't you think I think that gets back to that line in a story from last week of it's hard to govern by consensus in a crisis. I've thought a lot over the last month about whether and how the NBA would be acting differently. In a David Stern scenario versus and Adam scenario. Because we know that they operate so differently and that Adam clearly in some of the situations that have come up in recent years we've made the point and all three of US loved David and had had a long history with him so this is not a knock it's just times change That Adam silver is more suited to some of the challenges that have come up in the last five years and g the NBA needed. David Stern and the David Stern era and they've needed Adam. Silver in the Adam silver era. I don't know the answer to this question. I don't know if this is a summer a year where David Method of Governance. Maybe would have been more effective less effective. I think it certainly would be different. He's less of a consensus guy right. So I'm I'm just it's been an interesting thought exercise for me. Their styles are different. Rachel but I think there's there's a part of Adam that has a vision for what he wants and and the one thing he does have and I know this first and you talk to people around the League who have relationships with them and they're not necessarily all the people in the highest most prominent positions. I mean I can tell you people who are able to get access to him or he might reach out to them where you go. He's you know said he's going to listen to a lot of people but in the end. I I know there's a feeling in organizations and ownerships that in the end no matter the kind of input they give that Adam silver and the deputies around him. They're gonNA decide it in the end he's got. He does have an ability to go out and I think the fact that he had the relationships around the league whether it's owners players player agents general managers team presidents and business side when you have all those relationships going into a crisis like this. I think it's easier to manage it than when you're all of a sudden you're running around trying to build those because you can't. It's impossible to do that at this point so I do think that's helpful to to him in the league knowing his ability to connect is such a key part of how he's been a commissioner and again different from David who was sort of walk into a room whereas Adam stops along the way and I think that is going to be so critical To get buy in from all those different constituencies and it also speaks to one of the strengths of the NBA's whole is that a joke sometimes with some of the NBA staff members that we all knew each other when we were in our early twenty s because nobody leaves like the Hotel California in the NBA laying it. It's the same is largely the same people sort of matriculating through the system and at the NBA finals for a long time. The photo on your credential was the first photo they took for your first. Nba Finals and they never updated it and it was hysterical to walk around and see that not just for one or two people but for so many people. It was a photo from fifteen eighteen years ago and I think that that's the way the NBA works the Cliche of the NBA. Family is actually true. And a lot of ways these people have worked together and been part of each other's lives for kids being born and parents and all kinds of other family events I think that's GonNa Payoff in circumstances and we see it now with Martina under Adam Right. Merck is has all those relationships disease building. The Way Adam did when Adam was David's deputy and I do think that that is going to be. It's such a great strength. Adam has and I think it's going to be a strength the NBA has a deal with as he put it yesterday. The greatest challenge of their lives absolutely. We could keep going here guys. This was a lot of fun bobby. Thanks for jumping in Rachel. Happy Mother's Day and I will be celebrating it by not doing any third grade math perfect perfect so of course he can catch the jump all week next week through outright lying from racers. First say all right guys thanks. Very much It will catch you guys soon. Thanks for listening to this episode of the woods. Pot of big. Thank you to my guests today. Espn's Rachel Nichols and Bobby Marks. You can listen to new and archived episodes of the woods pod. Wherever you get your podcast stay safe out there. We'll catch next

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