LeBron James read a CNBC report that some team executives and agents would prefer the NBA cancel the current season so everyone can focus on safely returning next year. He then tweeted that the report is false, seemingly on the strength of only anecdotal evidence.
James wants to play. Mark Cuban is the first of a few owners to put it on record that he believes the season will resume. That's all well and good. One need not be a savant to understand that contending teams are a bit more interested in finishing what they've started than teams who have little to no postseason aspirations.
Solved it, baby.
Optimism and desire to return to normalcy helps us feel human right now. But both sides can talk until they're blue in the face about what is and isn't going to happen down the road and it won't. It doesn't really matter right now. James' alleged rebuttal, if you can call it that, hinges in a pretty significant caveat.
As soon as it's safe ...
That's the whole ballgame right there. It's been the whole ballgame since sports went away. Despite the painfully strong desires we all have for them to return, nothing can happen until all involved parties can go forward with confidence in their health. Planning for that day, which hopefully comes sooner rather than later, is fine. But pulling the trigger on resumption of the NBA season is a big decision that will need to be weighed and measured from every angle.
James may have sealed his statement with a crown but it's far from a royal decree. It doesn't really mean anything, even if he's one of the most powerful voices among players, who all need to get on the same page.
On paper, it makes more sense to wrap up a truncated 2019-2020 year before starting the 2020-2021 campaign if -- and it's a big if -- the league can get back to action before fall. We're obviously a long way from there. Perhaps no closer or further away than we were before today's back-and-forth.