NBA commissioner Adam Silver on Wednesday said he remains concerned about the need for the league's top players to appear in more games.
Many star players have taken to planned rest days in recent years -- a phenomenon sometimes referred to as load management -- in an effort to stay fresh and potentially avoid injury.
Silver, speaking with reporters in New York after meeting with the NBA's board of governors earlier this week, said the league and the players association have both acknowledged the problem.
“There wasn’t any banging of the table or anything like that," Silver said. "From my discussions with players, they recognize it’s an issue, too. The style of the game has changed in terms of the impact on their bodies. I think we’ve got to constantly assess and look at a marketplace going forward and say, what’s the best way to present our product and over how long a season?”
One possible solution Silver mentioned was exploring whether to add more "incentives" to keep more teams engaged throughout the season. He cited the expanded postseason system, a play-in tournament first added two years ago, as a success, and hinted at possibly adding an in-season tournament, according to Tim Bontemps of ESPN.
"The other way we can get at it, in terms of player participation, is creating other incentives. The play-in tournament, I thought, was a beginning of creating renewed incentives for teams to remain competitive and be fighting for playoff position. It might be through in-season tournaments and changes in format where we can get at it."
Another, potentially related, option, he said, could be shortening the 82-game regular season, which several star players over the years have said is too long.
“I also have said in the past, if we have too many games, that’s something we should look at as well. It’s something, as we sit down and we’re looking at new media deals and looking at a new collective bargaining agreement, we will be studying,” Silver said.
Silver has previously floated the idea of truncating the regular season, but said the potential loss in revenue would have to be offset by other means. The in-season tournament, with purses for winning teams and players, was being discussed as a tradeoff for shrinking the schedule down a proposed 78 games, ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reported last year.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.