Sports Are Returning
This post updates our April 8, 2020 Post about the state of professional sports as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. In our last post, we discussed the proposals that the NBA and MLB were discussing on how to restart the season. This post will discuss certain sports restarting their seasons.
NASCAR will be the first major sport to return in the U.S. The Cup Series will run two races at Darlington, South Carolina (May 17 and 20) before competing May 24 and May 27 at Charlotte Motor Speedway. NASCAR has announced only two weeks of racing for Cup teams through May 27 at Charlotte Motor Speedway. The race at the historic South Carolina track will be held without fans in attendance. There will also be a limit on the number of people allowed in the infield/pit row. NASCAR team have already reopened their shops.
Bundesliga (Professional Soccer)
Today, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and the heads of the German federal states decided hat the Bundesliga and Bundesliga 2 seasons can resume from mid-May. This marks the first Europeon Professional Soccer league to restart the season. The matches will be conducted without fans in attendance and a limit on the number of staff/officials allowed in the stadium.
On May 8, 2020, teams in “open states” may reopen practice facilities for individual workouts. Locally, the City of Miami has approved the Miami Heat to return to team practice at their facility at American Airlines Arena in Downtown Miami. The NBA is currently “floating” the idea of the NBA to play all of its games at Disney World in Orlando, Florida. Economically, that would be an excellent boast for the Central Florida economy whose tourist centered economy which has been crushed by the COVID-19 pandemic. The teams would be in a “bubble” in Disney World with a limit on player interaction and all of the games would played without fans. Ultimately, the teams may return in July and the NBA Finals would be over in September. Ultimately, the 2020-2021 Season would start in December 2020. NBA has already postponed the draft lottery and NBA draft until no earlier than August.
Major League Baseball is targeting opening day to be around July 1st but a concrete plan has not be submitted by the owners to the players union. The goal is for teams to play as many games as possible in their home city rather than in Florida or Arizona clusters.