NBA players are creatures of habit — they like their routines.
The coronavirus has blown up everyone’s routine. For guys who have built their careers and large parts of their lives around basketball, being on the court is at the heart of their routine. That’s largely been gone for months.
“I think it’ll be easier that we can play basketball,” he said. “I think that’s the thing that made everybody go stir crazy, because we can’t play basketball. Like, we’re basketball players, that’s what we do. So I felt like that’s the problem, that we couldn’t play basketball. Once you play basketball, I feel like everybody — it’ll still probably bother everybody that we’re not home — but at the end of the day, like I said, a lot of dudes will be happy to play basketball.”
Guys absolutely want to play again, but there are other considerations as well.
There are legitimate concerns about the impact of a return to play on the Black Lives Matter and social justice movements. There are growing concerns about players’ health and safety in the bubble. There are injury concerns.
For some players, that may be enough to keep them home from Orlando. For others, the combination of the love of the game and serious financial concerns will bring them to the restart. The buzz around the league is the vast majority of players will go to Orlando, albeit with varying levels of enthusiasm.
Maybe Adebayo is right. Maybe, once they get back to playing basketball, things will be easier.