Despite the balance of power shifting even more toward the West this offseason, NBA commissioner Adam Silver said the league will not consider rebalancing conferences or altering the playoff format for now.
Silver, though, did leave the door open for the possibility of one day rebalancing the two conferences or having a 16-seed tournament.
“Ultimately [two years ago] we concluded that given all the focus on sports science, health of our players and impact of travel, it didn’t make sense, at least at this time, to move to a rebalanced schedule because we played an imbalanced schedule,” Silver said at the board of governors news conference Wednesday.
“Ultimately I don’t recall the precise calculations, but it resulted in significantly more travel for our teams, especially for those teams on the coast. So the conclusion was at least, given the state of science on travel, we are better off staying in the conference system the way we have it and of course same implications for the playoffs. The notion of having teams crisscrossing the country in the first round didn’t seem to make sense to our teams.”
Silver admitted “many” were in favor of a 16-seed playoff when it was examined two years ago.
“Will we look at it again? I assume we will,” Silver said. “I think for the league, many of us felt that a 1-through-16 playoff made more sense and maybe there’s also the potential, in some ways a separate issue, should you reseed after every round as some leagues do? I think those are things we will continue to look at, but it is not at the top of the agenda right now.”
Source: Ohm Youngmisuk of ESPN
Sources: Jameer Nelson Signs 1-Year Deal With Pelicans
Free-agent guard Jameer Nelson has agreed to a one-year deal with the New Orleans Pelicans, league sources told The Vertical.
Nelson entered free agency Wednesday, when the Denver Nuggets waived him to create roster space to sign Richard Jefferson and allow second-year guard Jamal Murray to assume the starting point-guard role.
Source: Shams Charania of The Vertical
Bobby Portis Apologizes to Bulls for Mirotic Fight
Bobby Portis has apologized to his Bulls teammates for getting into a fight that left Nikola Mirotic with facial fractures and a concussion. “He didn’t address us today, but he did address the team before so that was taken care of,” Bulls swingman Justin Holiday said after Friday’s practice.
Bulls coach Fred Hoiberg acknowledged that Portis’ apology took place during a team meeting but did not want to go into specific details about his message. “I’ll keep that between the team,” Hoiberg said, “as far as exactly what was said in that meeting.”
Source: Nick Friedell of ESPN
Joel Embiid Still Not Cleared for Back-to-Back Games
Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid said he has not been cleared to play back-to-back games and does not expect to be in the lineup Saturday at Toronto.
Embiid was in the starting lineup for the home opener Friday night against the Boston Celtics, scoring 11 points to go along with 14 rebounds in 28 minutes as Philadelphia lost 102-92. Asked after Friday’s game if he was OK with not playing Saturday night, Embiid replied, “Um I’m not OK with it but we have a plan in place and we have to follow it.”