There is currently a massive hole in all of our lives where sports used to reside. NFL free agency has helped fill that hole a bit, but nothing can replace the absence of live sports happening in real time.
Enter the Big3, I guess. Chris Haynes of Yahoo! Sports reports the league plans to hold a three-week quarantined basketball tournament, complete with reality TV segments. The obvious caveat here is that everyone involved in the production of the tournament and the players, coaches, and staff would all have been tested beforehand. The tournament would feature 16-22 players all staying in the same house, with seven rounds of games. From the article:
"To assure the league is operating under safe conditions, players will be quarantined in a large home provided by the league, sources said. A basketball court/facility will be built on site. If a player breaks quarantine at any point during the tournament, he would be eliminated and removed from the premises, sources said. The games and the players’ daily lives will be captured on camera for added drama and storylines. The production crew would be stationed nearby but offsite from the players. There would be seven rounds of games, with teammates reshuffling after the first round. When a player accumulates three losses, he is eliminated. Cash prizes totaling millions of dollars will be awarded for first-, second- and third-place individual winners. "- Yahoo! Sports
In a statement to Haynes, co-founder Jeff Kwatinetz said if the league can guarantee the safety of everyone involved, they feel it would provide fans with a "safe, entertaining brand of basketball" to help get people through the pandemic.
This is undoubtedly a supremely entertaining idea, and locking a bunch of millionaires in the same house has never failed to provide quality content before. But given the recommendations in place by medical professionals, hosting the tournament before everything is more under control is irresponsible and comes across as opportunistic in a time where opportunism is not to be praised.
A lot could change in the next month, and maybe things will have improved to the point where something like this tournament would be viable. If done with the proper precautions, this could be great. But given the limited availability of coronavirus tests and the fact that we shouldn't be gathering with more than 10 people at any given time, to plan to hold it sometime in April seems both extraordinarily optimistic and reckless.