The NBA is considering restricting locker-room access to players with each franchise, including the Houston Rockets. Why is this concerning? Let’s look.
The Houston Rockets are still in the midst of a hotly-contested race for the playoff seeding. The No. 2 through the No. 7 seeds are all up for grabs and it will be anyone’s guess on how the standings will look once this season is over.
The Houston Rockets are currently 39-22 for the 5th best record in the Western Conference but they’re only 4.5 games out of the second slot to maximize their odds of ensuring that they have some type of home-court advantage throughout the playoffs.
The Los Angeles Lakers have continued to be five to six games ahead — they’re currently 5.5 games ahead of the Los Angeles Clippers, their closest rival — so it’s quite presumptive that they’re going to win the conference.
But how the final seeding is solidified will likely not be known until the final days of the season next month. Until then, it’s going to be an interesting ride to watch how the Houston Rockets, as well as the rest of the teams, fare toward the end.
Nonetheless, one of the top concerns today is how the United States is going to deal with the containment of the Coronavirus, something that has been of major concern over the past weeks. Concerts have been canceled, conferences are being postponed and people are thinking twice about that special trip that they were going take.
The Athletic’s Shams Charania is reporting that the NBA is discussing procedures on how they’re going to combat this malady and one of the items on the table is restricting access to the players in the locker room to only just team personnel and teammates.
This would mean that media wouldn’t be allowed in the room and they’ll have to be able to do their jobs remotely, likely elsewhere in the arena.
Charania also gives a caveat that approved procedures should be in place by Tuesday, March 10 for all teams.
Although this would make some teams happy — even players as well as coaches — this could infringe on the rights of the freedom of the press and could cause immense issues if their access if cut off altogether.
I’m sure the rules of engagement are being discussed but I’m positive that there’s going to be a
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medium as to what requirements members of the media will have to fulfill in order to enter the locker room.
Since people from all around the world travel to cover the NBA, particularly those nations where the virus had spread like wildfire, it’s understandable that the Association would have these concerns.
We’ll have to see how things pan out but it’ll be awkward not to see recorders and microphones stuffed in James Harden, Mike D’Antoni or Russell Westbrook‘s face while answering pertinent questions about games.
With the NBA also preparing its players to proceed to play games without fans because of the concerns, this one of the many measures that could be a reality for quite some time until a solution is figured out for eradication.
Do you think the NBA is going too far or is their decision-making right on the nose? Feel free to sound off in the comments section below.