BOSTON- Disney is the land where dreams come true and a child’s imagination can soar.
It’s also the site of the NBA’s return for the 2019-2020 season and possibly the biggest gamble of the year.
The coronavirus pandemic hit the NBA hard in March prompting a sports world shutdown that rocked both the media and the fans. No sports and no entertainment.
The feeling of a horror movie had now snuck in but a magical opportunity has arisen, albeit with heavy restrictions, hence the “bubble”.
From there, it will become a bubble environment, with interaction between the outside world basically eliminated. No family and no parks.
Sounds more like a punishment at first. On top of it all comes a possibility of snitching. In the form of a hotline.
Upon the bubble creation, the league announced an anonymous hotline enabling players who see individuals in the bubble acting irresponsibly or breaking health protocol, the opportunity to report that person to the league.
What happens to snitches? They get stitches. In this case, it could result in being sent home, not being on a team the next season and beyond, and for the person who reported the issue, being issued a label of teachers pet or snitch. Which name would you want in such a great destination?
Plus, the Orlando Magic are involved in the restart. With no fans being allowed at the events, they have the closest thing to a home court advantage.
However, their talent and their chances of winning the title rank at the bottom, similar to Cinderella’s tattered dress on a dress scale.
The other factor is the platform these players are using to spread social awareness following the recent outbreak of violence in our country regarding police brutality.
Instead of scoring behind the arc or in the paint, players are hoping to score outside the arena by their awareness making a difference in their community .
There are a list of players that don’t want to play the rest of this season due to personal or family concerns or feel they are better off helping the community.
There are also a list of players that feel that the money they make should primarily be used for spreading awareness.
Among those opting out are Trevor Ariza of the Portland Trail Blazers and Avery Bradley of the Lakers. LA has signed JR Smith to fill in for Bradley.
Wait, JR Smith? The same guy who blew Game 1 in 2018 causing a meltdown from Lebron James en route to a sweep?
The same JR who along with the rest of the Cavaliers didn’t play well causing the national media to draw up a list of excuses of why Lebron lost again to the Warriors?
Disney isn’t just the land of dreams, it’s also a land of second chances. Potentially it could be the land of memes should another blunder or embarrassing moment occur again.
Oh and who can forget the cherry on top? With no fan, anything said on the court by both players and coaches is visible! No hiding behind crowd noise now. Like in life, you now have to be careful of what you say.
Add some sprinkles when bets are placed at a high level now that the home court advantage is removed. Legalized betting in the US means more money could be lost or won based on these events .
Odds currently favor the Lakers to win but an early exit means the lakes won’t be the only drying factor for fans, but rather their wallets as well.
But the heat to melt this sundae comes in at full blast thanks to the inflation of cases in Florida and the deflation of not going around to enjoy the parks. No offense Patriot fans.
Gambling is a two way activity. Rewards are high and losses can be devastating. For the NBA, the reward is no issues while crowning a champion, while the risk is more players becoming infected therefore shutting it down again, this time for a longer period.
The castle has the NBA flag raised. The doors have been opened. Mickey and his friends await. It’s a magical time because the NBA is back……but will the fun last?