It remains to be seen when, or if, the NBA will resume the 2019-20 season, but is returning after this long of a layoff a good idea?
“I don’t think it is,” Shaquille O’Neal said on The DA Show. “We still have a lot of unanswered questions. One thing I hate seeing and hate hearing is, ‘Oh, it’s going to come back.’ What’s going to come back? I want it to be gone. I want it to be gone forever. There’s still a lot of uncertainty with this thing. I hear a lot of states are opening up. I hate seeing the numbers of the people that pass away. I lost a couple people during this. Whoever is listening, if you lost somebody to COVID-19, my heart goes out to you.”
The NBA suspended its season March 11. Almost two months later, the league’s return date remains in limbo.
“I think Adam Silver did a great job of being the first commissioner to worry about the safety of the players and the people,” O’Neal said. “I think we should just call it this year and make sure this thing is behind us and come back next year. But I’m not in charge. I hear that they’re talking about Disney or Vegas. We’ll see what happens, but I think you know the old saying: better safe than sorry.”
While O’Neal would err on the side of caution now, he likely wouldn’t have during his prime.
“I would say come back because I realize that sports do a lot for people,” he said. “Whenever I played, I never worried about me. I worried about the guy that brought his son to a game. I worried about the guy that brought his family to a game. I worried about the corporate guys that’s been sitting in the office all day. You just want to come to the game, grab a beer and relax. So I would say, ‘Yeah, let’s come back – because it’s not about me. It’s about the people.’”