The 2019-2020 NBA Season’s Resumption

Photo by Tim Reynolds captures the court in the bubble and demonstrates basketball and social injustice.

Photo by Tim Reynolds captures the court in the bubble and demonstrates basketball and social injustice.

Ari Coplon

In a year where nothing is normal, the National Basketball Association (NBA) was forced to put the season on hold due to the coronavirus pandemic in March. Over the last four months, the NBA and NBA Players Association were negotiating a safe and efficient plan to resume its season, and crown a champion.  After a four-month hiatus, the NBA restarted its season at the Disney World Resort in Florida in what the NBA called the “NBA Bubble”. 

When the players entered the bubble, the league forced them to quarantine and gave them a watch that buzzes when they come within six feet of another person. The circumstances at the bubble were described by Washington Post Writer Ben Golliver as “temporary detention”. In their off time, players are taking advantage of the hotel’s accommodations the resort has provided for them as a part of the experience of being in the bubble. 

Philadelphia 76er’s forward Matisse Thybulle and Los Angeles Lakers center Javale McGee have been vlogging and giving their viewers an inside perspective of the players’ daily life. Regarding the vlog, Thybulle said, “I felt like this was a good opportunity to just see what happens”. Thybulle wanted to use his vlog to give a perspective in a unique situation by vlogging daily life and behind the scenes in the bubble.  

Thybulle has successfully gathered a large audience and even got the attention of fellow YouTuber Casey Neistat and The Tonight Show host Jimmy Fallon. Both vlogs capture the daily life off the court in the bubble, and in episodes five and six of Thybulle’s vlog series, he gains footage of multiple conversations with teammates regarding the social injustice in America. 

Amidst the social injustice issues that are being faced in America, the NBA is making great efforts to create a platform to raise awareness. The NBA is allowing players to customize their jerseys to support the Black Lives Matter Movement. Players have messages such as “Vote,” “Love Us,” and “Black Lives Matter” that are displayed instead of their last name on their jerseys to allow players to use their voices during times where it is extremely important to do so. 

Before the season resumed, Utah Jazz superstar Donavon Mitchell said, “Obviously we want to win a championship and play games, but the ultimate goal is to continue to spread the message”. Mitchell is among players who recognize spreading awareness and making change is even more important than playing basketball.  Students at Emery Weiner feel the same way about the importance of social injustice, and senior Josh Sher gave insight on his opinions on NBA players using their platforms as athletes to make a difference in our country today. 

“What they are doing is good, and the players have a platform that they should use for good,” Sher said. The players want to use this opportunity to make a positive impact on the country, which is in desperate need of that with many issues bigger than basketball being present.

 The NBA bubble has given Americans something to be excited about, a distraction from the outside world for the general population, and slight hope during these unprecedented times. The players still are balancing playing basketball with the social injustice issues in America, and for many players, it has been difficult. With the playoffs nearing an end, the NBA bubble’s experiment will soon be ending, and teams can hopefully safely play their games next season in their hometowns, unlike the conclusion of this year’s season, in the NBA bubble.