It’s been two months since we found out that Rudy Gobert had tested positive for the Coronavirus and the NBA suspended play indefinitely. This week some NBA teams have slowly been able to reopen their practice facilities for safe workouts. It is a move that on the surface seems to show the NBA is moving in a direction to resume the season when they can figure out a plan to guarantee safety for players and their family members.
If things restart sometime in the next couple of months, there are several ideas floating around on how to finish the season. Some think the NBA should go right into the playoffs with the top 8-seeds in each conference at the time of the suspension making the post season. Others believe the NBA will try to get every team to 70 regular season games before the playoffs start.
Unless the NBA opens the playoffs up to every team in the league in some kind of NCAA style seeded tournament, the Timberwolves will not be making the playoffs this year. As of the suspension the Wolves are 14th in the West, 12.5 games behind the Grizzlies for 8th place, and have already played 64 games this season. Any way you look at it, even if the season resumes and they finish ever regular season game that was previously scheduled through game 82, the Wolves have no chance of making the playoffs. So what should the team do if and when the season resumes?
If the league goes right into the playoffs, the Wolves won’t have to do anything. Minnesota will just go into its offseason like any other normal year. But what if there are more regular season games to be played? If the season comes back for at least six games the Wolves should think about forfeiting the rest of the season. There is no reason to bring all of their players to Las Vegas or Orlando to play in meaningless games. Their two stars Karl-Anthony Towns and D’Angelo Russell have both been battling injuries this season and will gain nothing by coming back from isolation to play a few essentially exhibition games. Stay home and keep your players safe and start the offseason earlier vs. corralling everyone in the “bubble” that the NBA sets up and risk getting your players sick or hurt for absolutely no reason? This should be a no-brainer. If the NBA season comes back the Timberwolves shouldn’t hesitate to tell NBA Commissioner Adam Silver that they will not be competing, and should forfeit the rest of the season.