Adam Silver discusses NBA’s plan for fans, vaccines, one-and-done

NBA commissioner Adam Silver addresses questions at a recent press conference.

Adam Silver addressed the media (via zoom) on Saturday during his annual news conference that precedes the NBA All-Star game. Silver spoke about a range of topics, including his optimism that things will go back to normal by the time the 2021-22 season rolls around.

“I’m fairly optimistic, at this point, that we will be able to start on time,” Silver said (via Tim Reynolds of The Associated Press). “Roughly half our teams have fans in their arenas right now and, if vaccines continue on the pace they are and they continue to be as effective as they have been against the virus and its variants, we’re hopeful that we’ll have relatively full arenas next season as well.”

Will Players Be Required to Take Vaccine?

The commissioner added that it won’t be a prerequisite for players to get the vaccine in order to have fans back in every arena next season.

“I don’t think that every player certainly needs to be vaccinated for fans to come back,” Silver added. “I mean, that’s not anything that the health authorities have suggested to us.”

Silver continued, saying that he was unaware of any player who has already received the vaccine (some coaches, such as Spurs coach Gregg Popovich, have already been vaccinated).

No “Concrete Plans” to Resume Summer League

Silver said there are no “concrete plans” to resume Summer League in Las Vegas. Last year, the event was canceled because of the pandemic. This year, it may be difficult to hold because of timing; the NBA Finals are scheduled to run as late as July 22 (or through the time when Summer League usually concludes.

“I think we’re going to end up (with) maybe an abbreviated summer league, mini-camps and other opportunities,” Silver said. “Everything’s on the table now.”

Latest on One-and-Done Rule

Silver and NBPA Executive Director Michele Roberts continue to have a dialogue about whether or not players should be allowed to enter the NBA draft at the age of 18, something that would eliminate the one-and-done rule.

“We both agreed that as part of the process of looking at a new collective bargaining agreement, we should discuss that issue,” Silver said.

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About the Author

Chris Crouse
As a co-owner of, Chris Crouse wears many hats, including editor and marketing director. He previously covered sports business at CNBC and he has covered the NBA for various publications, including SLAM Magazine and Hoops Rumors, in addition to working on the business side of media.

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