In a first step of progress to the reopening of the season, the NBA is planning on allowing teams in cities in which there is no longer a lockdown to open their practice facilities May 1 for players to stage informal workouts, according to ESPN.
A person with knowledge of the situation specified that if it comes to pass, players would only be allowed to conduct individual workouts — not group ones.
This won’t hold true for the Knicks and Nets, because Gov. Cuomo’s coronavirus lockdown is set to end May 15. However, there is always a possibility of commissioner Adam Silver getting Cuomo to give the Knicks and Nets a waiver.
The Knicks’ Tarrytown facility and the Nets’ practice site in Brooklyn are supposed to be closed under the government’s order.
That could essentially put both clubs at a slight disadvantage — especially the Nets, who are in position to make the playoffs. A reopening of the Nets’ facility would allow Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving to resume their rehab work.
On Saturday morning, a Knicks spokesman would not confirm if the Tarrytown facility has been closed.
According to an NBA source, at least a couple of Knicks players would be wary of returning to New York in mid-May — the U.S. epicenter of the COVID-19 virus — if things didn’t improve drastically.
Most of the Knicks are scattered across the country.
Atlanta is one city in which the government has pulled back on a lockdown, leaving the Hawks in position to start informal workouts ahead of a potential brief training camp. Florida, home to the Heat and the Magic, also does not have a lockdown.
According to one industry source, the Players Association is frustrated at recent lines of communication regarding the pandemic’s effect on the season.
In a recent conference call with agents, the union expressed concern it occasionally finds out about NBA -related pandemic developments from the news media.
Silver seemed at a loss on April 17 in a conference call after a Columbia disease specialist gave a foreboding presentation. He sounded bleak about the resumption of the season, saying nothing would change until May 1.
The season was suspended March 11. Multiple sources believe the regular season may be scrapped anyway and just a shortened 16-team playoff would be staged at one site. Silver had banned players from attending their practice facilities in late March.
“Based on the reports we have gotten from various outside officials, current public health officials, we are not in a position to make any decisions, and it’s unclear when we will be,’’ Silver said.