Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban thinks the NBA season will continue at some point. The NBA suspended its season Wednesday night after Utah Jazz star Rudy Gorbert tested positive for the coronavirus.
The regular season was scheduled to end in mid-April, but Cuban says the season and the playoffs could be pushed into July and August.
“Hopefully, this virus runs its course over the next 60 days or so and then at that point we can start making decisions about if the NBA plays games, what our schedule looks like and we can progress from there,” Cuban said on ESPN’s Get Up on Thursday. “I can easily see us playing the last seven to 10 games of the regular season to get everybody back on court and going right into the playoffs and going into July, if not August.”
Mark Cuban does not think the NBA season will be cancelled, just postponed, and could see games being played into August. pic.twitter.com/PtStFlypPL
— Get Up (@GetUpESPN) March 12, 2020
While Cuban is optimistic that the NBA season will resume, not everyone else in the league is. According to Chris Mannix of Sports Illustrated, the other owners don’t think that the season will be able to be continued.
“The people I’ve talked to tonight, they don’t have any idea how long this is going to last, and if I had to characterize it any way, there’s not a lot of optimism that this season is going to be able to be resumed. There’s more of a sense that — and they’re getting this from their own medical experts — that there’s a real possibility that this gets worse countrywide before it gets better.”
NBA owners are asking commissioner Adam Silver to reevaluate the league’s suspension in 30 days. In the meantime, Cuban is working on a plan to pay hourly workers at the Mavericks’ American Airlines Center during the stoppage.
“I reached out to the folks at the arena and our folks at the Mavs to find out what it would cost to support, financially support, people who aren’t going to be able to come to work,” Cuban said. “They get paid by the hour, and this was their source of income. So, we’ll do some things there. We may ask them to go do some volunteer work in exchange, but we’ve already started the process of having a program in place. I don’t have any details to give, but it’s certainly something that’s important to me.”
“I reached out … to find out what it would cost to financially support people who aren’t going to be able to come to work.”
–Mark Cuban on his plan for Mavericks employees during the NBA suspension pic.twitter.com/McOl1vHUqO
— ESPN (@espn) March 12, 2020
Since the NBA suspended its season, other sports leagues have done the same. Notably, the NCAA canceled its men’s and women’s basketball tournaments.