NBA Reportedly Approves Plan to Return to Play at Walt Disney World’s ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex

Yesterday, it was reported that the NBA was ready to approve a plan to return to play at Walt Disney World’s ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex. Today, it appears the NBA has approved that plan, according to ESPN.


  • The NBA has officially announced that the board of governors has voted to approve the proposed return format.
  • The season restart is still contingent on an agreement with The Walt Disney Company to use Walt Disney World Resort near Orlando, Florida, as a single site for a campus for all games, practices and housing for the remainder of the season.
  • NBA Commissioner Adam Silver shared the following statement regarding the news:
    • “The Board’s approval of the restart format is a necessary step toward resuming the NBA season. While the COVID-19 pandemic presents formidable challenges, we are hopeful of finishing the season in a safe and responsible manner based on strict protocols now being finalized with public health officials and medical experts.  We also recognize that as we prepare to resume play, our society is reeling from recent tragedies of racial violence and injustice, and we will continue to work closely with our teams and players to use our collective resources and influence to address these issues in very real and concrete ways.”


  • A source told ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski that the NBA’s board of governors voted to approve the league’s 22-team format to restart the season.
  • The NBA's Board of Governors required a three-fourths passage of the 30 teams on this plan and, according to ESPN’s source, the plan was approved with a 29-1 vote.
  • ESPN’s SportsCenter shared a fun Disney-themed video celebrating the return of the NBA:

  • Under the proposal, the return of the NBA would begin on July 31st, with the last possible date for a 7th game in the finals taking place on October 12th.
  • The plan will consist of the return of 22 teams with each team playing eight regular-season games in Orlando for seeding purposes for the playoffs.
  • If the No. 9 seed is more than four games behind, the No. 8 seed will make the playoffs. If the No. 9 seed is less than four games back, there will be a play-in tournament.
  • The return of the NBA is expected to be played at the ESPN Wide World of Sports complex at the Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida. The facility already has the built in media facilities and is already in an isolated area that will help with social distancing efforts.
  • Joining the 16 current playoff teams in Orlando will be the:
    • New Orleans Pelicans
    • Portland Trail Blazers
    • Phoenix Suns
    • Sacramento Kings
    • San Antonio Spurs
    • Washington Wizards