DENVER (CBS4) – When the NBA season resumes at Disney World in July there will be both mental and physical challenges facing the teams and players.
“Think about this. You will be stuck in a bubble. No family, no friends, no fans, no home court advantage, and you’re stuck in a very sterile environment,” said Nuggets head coach Michael Malone when he joined CBS4 sports anchor Michael Spencer on Monday for Xfinity Monday Live.
“My challenge to our team is can you not just survive, but thrive.”
Malone is also concerned about the potential for injuries.
“They’re not allowing us to do any live 5-on-5 work prior to going to Orlando, so we’re going to have roughly a two and a half three week window to get guys back to playing,” said Malone.
“You can play every day, you can workout every day, but you can’t replicate playing in an NBA 5-on-5 basketball game.”
In addition to all of that, the Nuggets have not been together as an entire team in several months.
“We have been individuals for the last 90 days. And every NBA team has,” said Malone.
“We have been sequesters, we’ve been away, we’ve been social distancing, so we’ve ball been by ourselves. We know that the 16 teams that make the playoffs are all talented teams, but I feel one of the greatest challenges is for the team that can reunite and come together the quickest.”
The Nuggets are currently the third seed in the Western Conference with a record of 43-22. They trail the Lakers (49-14) and the Clippers (44-20) in the Western Conference standings.
As of now the NBA is set to begin preseason games on July 22 with the regular season beginning on July 30.