NBA reveals long-awaited plans for in-season event that begins in November


LAS VEGAS — Coming quickly: the NBA Cup.

The NBA unveiled the small print Saturday of its inaugural in-season event, which may have a prize pool of about $18 million and shall be capped by a championship recreation — which gained’t rely within the standings — in Las Vegas on Dec. 9. It’s an occasion that NBA commissioner Adam Silver wished for years, giving groups a trophy to play for throughout the common season.

And now, it’s lastly actuality.

“This can be a idea that has been rumbling across the league workplace for about 15 years,” Silver mentioned. “It’s not a brand new idea in sports activities. For those who observe significantly worldwide soccer, it’s an extended custom of getting in-season tournaments … so we thought, what an ideal alternative for a world league just like the NBA and it’s an ideal match for our recreation.”

The event payouts for gamers on customary contracts shall be $500,000 apiece for these on the successful group, $200,000 apiece for these on the runner-up, $100,000 apiece for these on the groups that lose semifinal video games and $50,000 for these on the groups that lose within the quarterfinals.

Two-way gamers on any of these groups are eligible for as much as half these quantities, relying on what number of video games they spend on a roster throughout the event.

“I can see what the intention could possibly be,” mentioned Miami guard Josh Richardson, who follows international soccer carefully and understands the parallels Silver makes when evaluating it to in-season tournaments that sport has all over the world. “It offers you one other probability to win one thing, for actual. I believe that’s a giant half.”

Video games will begin on Nov. 3, being performed totally on Tuesdays and Fridays in November — apart from Nov. 7, when the NBA will play no video games to commemorate Election Day. That announcement got here Saturday, and can mark the second consecutive yr when the NBA has no video games on that date with hopes of selling civic consciousness and engagement.

The Remaining 4 shall be in Las Vegas.

“This metropolis is aware of the way to host massive occasions,” Silver mentioned.

Groups had been assigned to a five-team group. They’ll play one recreation in opposition to one another; the six group winners will make the quarterfinals, as will the perfect two second-place groups from the teams.

They had been chosen as follows:

West Group A — Memphis, Phoenix, the Los Angeles Lakers, Utah and Portland.

West Group B — Denver, the Los Angeles Clippers, New Orleans, Dallas and Houston.

West Group C — Sacramento, Golden State, Minnesota, Oklahoma Metropolis and San Antonio.

East Group A — Philadelphia, Cleveland, Atlanta, Indiana and Detroit.

East Group B — Milwaukee, New York, Miami, Washington and Charlotte.

East Group C — Boston, Brooklyn, Toronto, Chicago and Orlando.

“I’m enthusiastic about this midseason event,” Golden State coach Steve Kerr mentioned. “I believe it’s going so as to add a component of vitality and pleasure for the gamers and coaches and the followers. I believe it’s an ideal concept.”

Joe Dumars, the league’s government vp of basketball operations and a Corridor of Famer as a participant, mentioned he thinks gamers will like the thought — even when it takes a while.

“All people’s not going to purchase in immediately,” Dumars mentioned. “That may’t be the objective, that everyone’s going to purchase in from Day 1. These items take time. And I believe as time goes on you’ll be able to construct this up and other people can actually get into it.”

Match video games, apart from the championship recreation, will all rely within the standings — a lot in the identical method that the WNBA runs its Commissioner’s Cup occasion.

It’s been recognized for a while that groups shall be getting solely an 80-game schedule when the 2023-24 slate is launched by the NBA within the coming weeks.

Video games 81 and 82 shall be added in December; that is the place issues get difficult.

Groups that don’t make the knockout stage shall be assigned two video games in opposition to different non-knockout qualifiers, and people would be the lacking two video games on their schedules.

For the eight groups that make the knockout stage, the quarterfinal recreation turns into the 81st recreation added to their schedule. Quarterfinal losers — two from the East, two from the West — will play one another, and that’ll be the 82nd recreation on their schedules. Semifinalists — once more, two from the East, two from the West — will play, and that recreation turns into the 82nd recreation on their schedules.

Which means the championship recreation shall be one in every of 83 video games on the schedule for the final two groups standing. And because the season is 82 video games, that recreation gained’t rely within the standings, nor will the stats rely for something. They’ll be enjoying for cash and the trophy.


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