NBA bubble begins on quiet, made-for-TV stage at Disney; “Black Lives Matter” appearing prominently on court, part of joint efforts with National Basketball Players Association to address concerns about distracting from ongoing social justice protests

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Because of the league’s rigorous approach to reducing the novel coronavirus risk to players, there were no fans, no cheerleaders and no mascots at the first scrimmage before the NBA resumes regular season play on July 30. A cameraman was positioned on the sideline, two ballboys in masks and gloves sat on the baseline, and two scouts and roughly a dozen media members watched from about 15 feet back from the court.

Fourteen people, including the public address announcer, official scorer, shot clock operator and team public relations officials, sat at a courtside table, which was surrounded by tall Plexiglas walls, like a hockey penalty box, to limit contact with players and coaches. All told, there appeared to be fewer than 200 people visible from the court, including the players and coaches, who sat on physically distanced chairs and hydrated with personal bottles rather than large buckets. Some members of the coaching staff and inactive players wore masks on the bench as they took their seats for the first time since the NBA season was indefinitely suspended March 11.

Source: The Washington Post

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Atlanta Hawks unveil trio of new 2020-21 uniforms with franchise’s classic colors and updated wordmarks

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ATLANTA — The Atlanta Hawks today revealed new uniforms, inspired by the franchise’s signature colors and marks synonymous with the team and its history in the city of Atlanta since 1968. In addition to the uniforms, the team also released new primary and secondary logos along with new ‘Atlanta Hawks’ wordmarks. The team will begin wearing these uniforms to start the 2020-21 season.

Infinity Black and Legacy Yellow rejoin Torch Red and Granite Gray to create a visual identity derived from the Hawks proud heritage. These core colors have been present throughout the Hawks’ time in Atlanta, having adorned more than five decades of Hawks Basketball including Hawks Legends Lou Hudson, Pete Maravich, Dikembe Mutombo and Dominique Wilkins.

Source: NBA

When the NBA returns it may use ‘NBA 2K’ for crowd noise to simulate fans in empty Orlando arenas

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The NBA appears to be back, as both players and owners have approved the league’s 22-team proposal to resume play in Orlando, Florida on July 31 — but the games we eventually see will be much different than anything we’ve grown accustomed to. There will be social distancing, masks and smaller, non-NBA arenas. The most immediately noticeable difference, however, will likely be the lack of fans in the stands.

So what will the NBA do? Well, the league is considering using crowd noise from the popular video game, NBA 2K, to simulate fans during games in Orlando, according to Shams Charania of The Athletic. He added that the league and the NBPA are still discussing creative options.

Source: Engadget