MGM has reportedly told the NBA that it has a plan for the association to finish its season in Las Vegas.
Per the New York Times, the company has proposed that it could host the NBA at its resort complex while keeping players, their families and staffers away from the general public.
According to a proposal deck sent to the N.B.A. and the W.N.B.A., which The New York Times reviewed, MGM envisions a fully quarantined campus, essentially one full block of the Las Vegas Strip, where players would live and play out whatever schedule the leagues want. The athletes would be joined by their families, league and broadcast media employees, as well as the staff and vendors needed to serve them, with access to lounges, spas, restaurants and all the other perks the resorts offer (yes, even gambling).
MGM would be able to build 24 courts in its convention centers for practices and games. Five of those courts could be equipped with television cameras so that games could be televised. The Mandalay Bay would be the central hub in this proposal because it has nearly 5,000 rooms and is connected to other buildings and the convention center has served as the host to the WNBA’s Las Vegas Aces.
Allowing players’ families to stay with them while the season is finishing and also providing recreational activities would at least be some semblance of normalcy for everyone involved. Pitches to quarantine players amongst themselves to get sports seasons started or finished are a bit inhumane. No one — no matter his or her salary — wants to live in isolation away from their friends and family for weeks or months.
MGM would also stand to benefit from the NBA’s resumption. Hosting the end to the NBA season would be some much-needed business and revenue for the company, which has seen its resorts’ revenue decline like nearly every other gaming company.
The Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau said Thursday that Macao casino revenue was down nearly 97 percent year-over-year. Per the Las Vegas Review-Journal, Sands, Wynn and MGM have properties on or near the Macao Peninsula, and those properties generate a significant amount of each company’s revenue.
The NBA hasn’t officially announced any plans for getting the seasons done, though it gave a clue that it is still working toward an official conclusion on Friday. The league has officially postponed the draft lottery and scouting combine.
It also reportedly has seriously considered pushing the start of the 2020-21 season to December in order to facilitate a conclusion to the 2019-20 season while also giving players a typical-length offseason.
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Nick Bromberg is a writer for Yahoo Sports.
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