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The NBA is coming back on December 22, following a new regular season, this time with a calendar reduced to 72 games. The season NBA 2021 starts earlier than expected so the fans already have their Christmas gift.
Players’ Union and the NBA reached this agreement last October after some somewhat conflicting negotiations. There were some players opposed to starting so soon and they preferred to start in the middle of January 2021. These players locked up in the Orlando bubble to claim their rights. But in the end, they gave in completely after the NBA showed them the millions in losses they could suffer in their salaries if they did not accept the plan.
The NBA has also calculated the losses in case the 2020-21 season has to be played without fans in the stadiums. This amount could be up to 4 billion dollars.
📅 New Calendar with 72 Games
Starting on 22 December and with only 72 matches in the season, the NBA believes that this will give breathing space before the Summer Olympics arrive by the end of July.
Another fact is that the 72 matches will be played without having to compete with the Tokyo 2021 Games. This will allow the NBA to collect between 500 and 1 billion dollars more for television rights.
These 72 games will include the traditional Christmas Day matches on television.
🖊 Free Agency Signings
The free agency opened on Nov. 22 and more than 50 players had already agreed to contracts. But the transfer market and free agency for this new NBA season have seen a lot of activity from franchises.
Some of the notable surprises have been Dwight Howard’s deal with the Sixers (previously with the Lakers). Also, Montrezl Harrell’s with the Lakers (previously with the Clippers).
One of the rumours spread by the NBA has been also recently confirmed: the signing of DeMarcus Cousins with the Houston Rockets. After several serious injuries in his career, the player returns to the NBA courts, this time playing for the Texas franchise.
Meanwhile, the uncertainty of what James Harden will do continues to hit Houston Rockets. Harden, 31, the NBA’s top scorer for the past three seasons, is in negotiations with the Brooklyn Nets over his exit from the Rockets. Although there is much speculation and the issue is in all the headlines, as of this writing, there is no confirmation yet.
Concerning King LeBron James, he has signed an extension of his contract with the Lakers until 2023.
MAKE THE MOST OF YOUR NBA PREDICTIONS
🏆 Favorites to Win NBA 2021 Season
The current champion, Los Angeles Lakers, starts as the favorites to win the NBA championship in the next season 2021.
The odds are already known and they point to the Lakers to be the first to be crowned for the second consecutive year, followed by their all-time rivals LA Clippers.
Other competitors to consider are Golden State Warriors and Milwaukee Bucks.
Due to pandemic disruptions and consequently its format changes, season 20219-20 has been the longest one in NBA history. And it will be only seven weeks between the end of the NBA Finals and the planned start of boot camp on December 1.
The new NBA season will begin before the end of this pandemic year, and we will have the opportunity to enjoy the show earlier than expected. So get ready, the show is on!