According to a report from Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports on Tuesday, a large number of players on teams that have virtually no shot at making a push for a playoff spot would prefer to sit out the remainder of the season:
The majority of players who are essentially eliminated from postseason contention would rather the league start back up with the top eight teams in each conference competing in some sort of playoff, sources said.
This isn’t the first time we’ve heard something like this since the NBA indefinitely suspended the season in March. During a video conference call with the University of San Francisco last month, Golden State Warriors head coach Steve Kerr said his team was in “offseason mode” with a league-worst record of 15-50. The Warriors are the only team that have been mathematically eliminated from playoff contention, but there are five other teams with 20 or less wins that might as well be — the Sacramento Kings aren’t one of them, which could put them in an unfortunate position when the league makes its decision on the regular season.
If players on teams outside of the top-16 aren’t as enthusiastic to restart the season as teams in the playoff picture, there’s a good chance owners aren’t either, and from a financial standpoint, the Kings might be better off just calling this season a loss.
Obviously that’s not what the fans want to see, but if fans can’t buy tickets to support the team, ownership might feel more comfortable making decisions independent of their fans’ feelings. Whatever decision they come to, it sounds like we’ll be finding out sooner rather than later.
Cross your fingers, Sacramento.