Cavaliers step cautiously into hopeful return to NBA season

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Even when the NBA would not resume this season, and at this level nobody is aware of for positive, the Cleveland Cavaliers imagine it is time to begin preparing for the following one.

“Any minute that we will get working with one another is helpful to us,” Cavs coach J.B. Bickerstaff stated Wednesday.


Cleveland is one in every of a handful of groups planning to reopen observe services on Friday so gamers can work out as states throughout the nation ease the social-distancing restrictions put in place in the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, which introduced sports activities to an abrupt halt in March.

Bickerstaff, who took over one of many league’s youngest groups in February after John Beilein stepped down halfway by his first season, stated the Cavs have been in touch with native and Ohio officers to make sure they’re following the correct protocol to guard personnel.

Solely 4 gamers will probably be permitted at a time contained in the group’s facility in Independence, Ohio, which has been closed for practically two months. The Cavs intend to carry two-hour classes throughout which just one participant and one developmental coach — carrying gloves and a masks — will probably be permitted on the identical basket.

Bickerstaff stated security is paramount. The Cavs’ medical employees will take the temperature of each individual earlier than coming into the constructing, and there will probably be areas off limits. Additionally, the group intends to designate and mark basketballs for every participant so there is no such thing as a cross-over and all the things will probably be meticulously cleaned.

“The league is recommending that they hold 12 ft between each other, so that you’re there mainly rebounding for a man and passing to a man,” Bickerstaff stated throughout a Zoom convention name. “Nobody is being pressured to do something. If folks really feel uncomfortable doing this, it’s not necessary for them to indicate up. We’ve bought some guys on employees which are keen to do it.”

The league is attempting to make sure that no group has a aggressive benefit by opening their facility. Many groups can not, a few of them presumably for a number of extra weeks, due to native governmental rules.

The scenario stays fluid. Bickerstaff spoke to reporters shortly after he and different coaches had been on a name with NBA Commissioner Adam Silver, who has been invited by the Nationwide Basketball Gamers Affiliation to talk to gamers in a name on Friday.

Bickerstaff stays hopeful the league will be capable of enact a plan so the Cavs can get again on the ground. After months of tumult, they had been starting to click on and had gone 5-6 below Bickerstaff, who feels his group was meshing and headed in the fitting course.

“I am enthusiastic about it,” he stated. “Clearly the additional issues go, the longer persons are separated, it’s important to do extra artistic issues. With the way in which we had been shifting, I feel this separation will make folks extra excited to get again collectively and I feel we will springboard off that pleasure each time it’s that we’re capable of get again collectively.”

Within the meantime, he’ll keep centered on teaching. His tenure as a stay-at-home instructor in the course of the quarantine was quick.

“It lasted about two days and the children revolted,” he stated with fun. “So I made the choice that was greatest for everyone was for me to go away them alone and let my spouse deal with that. I train P.E. class now, I determine that’s in my wheelhouse.”

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