The N.B.A. will formally present a return-to-play plan to its team owners on Thursday that calls for 22 of its 30 teams to resume the 2019-20 season at Walt Disney World Resort in Florida in late July, according to several people familiar with the league’s intentions.
The single-site, 22-team format requires the voting support of at least 23 owners and is expected to be approved comfortably during a conference call scheduled for Thursday at 12:30 p.m. Eastern time, according to the people, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to publicly discuss the details of the proposal.
Subsequent approval from the National Basketball Players Association will also be required to enact the plan, but the league’s commissioner, Adam Silver, has been working on it for weeks with Oklahoma City’s Chris Paul, the union president, and Robert A. Iger, Disney’s executive chairman. ESPN, one of the N.B.A.’s two main media partners — the other is Turner Sports — is owned by Disney.
The N.B.A. moved last week toward a 22-team format featuring the 16 teams that were in each conference’s playoff positions and the six teams that were within six games of a playoff spot when the league abruptly suspended play on March 11 because of the coronavirus pandemic.