The NBA playoffs are officially set to resume tomorrow, and the league has just unveiled details of its agreement with players.
National Basketball Players Association Executive Director Michele Roberts and National Basketball Association Commissioner Adam Silver on Friday announced that NBA playoff games will resume on Aug. 29. Numerous games were postponed this week after the Milwaukee Bucks boycotted in response to the police shooting of Jacob Blake in Kenosha, Wisconsin, though on Thursday, reports emerged that players had agreed to continue the season. This decision, the Friday statement said, was made “with the understanding” that the league will enact several commitments.
First, the statement said, the NBA and its players will establish a social justice coalition that will be “focused on a broad range of issues” including increased access to voting and police and criminal justice reform.
Additionally, the announcement said that in “every city where the league franchise owns and controls the arena property,” team governors will work with election officials to convert facilities into voting locations for the 2020 presidential election, and “if a deadline has passed, team governors will work with local elections officials to find another election-related use for the facility, including but not limited to voter registration and ballot receiving boards.”
Finally, the NBA will also work to include ads during games “dedicated to promoting greater civic engagement” in elections and “raising awareness around voter access and opportunity,” the statement said.
After Wednesday’s boycotts, the NBA also postponed games that were scheduled for Thursday. Initially, it was unclear whether the playoffs might not resume at all, as The Washington Post reported there was a “charged meeting” on Wednesday night “in which some players expressed a desire to stop playing in the bubble and return home.” Brendan Morrow