While Chicago reportedly lost out on housing NHL clubs for the league's 24-team format to crown a 2019-20 Stanley Cup champion amid the coronavirus pandemic, the city could host a handful of NBA teams with losing records.
On Thursday, ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski tweeted that the NBA could place the eight franchises not invited to participate in the 22-team resumption held at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex in Orlando at a Chicago bubble site for training camp sessions and games in September to avoid long layoffs leading up to a December opening night for the 2020-21 campaign:
The NBA is closing in on signing off on a second “bubble” in Chicago for the eight teams that were not invited to play in Orlando, enabling mini-training camps and subsequent games against other clubs with a target date of September, sources tell ESPN’s Jackie MacMullan.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) July 2, 2020
The Cleveland Cavaliers, Atlanta Hawks, Detroit Pistons, New York Knicks, Chicago Bulls, Charlotte Hornets, Golden State Warriors and Minnesota Timberwolves would be the eight invited clubs.
Wojnarowski didn't note if teams swiftly eliminated from the Orlando bubble would also be asked to participate in Chicago.
According to ESPN's Jackie MacMullan, however, Pistons coach Dwane Casey claims a "majority" of coaches among the eight teams prefer to hold their own mini-camps rather than flock to a hub city.
MacMullan added that Warriors general manager Bob Myers agreed to participate in the Chicago bubble.
In early June, Hawks coach Lloyd Pierce campaigned for the league to invite all 30 teams to the Orlando site so each club could finish the season.
"I coach the youngest team in the NBA. And the biggest thing we can benefit from is playing basketball, and the game has been taken away from all of us at this point.
"But if the season is going to resume and we're still not a part of it, it hurts our growth, it hurts our product, it hurts our ability to continue the momentum that we need going into next season.
"I play young guys, I have young guys. They need game experience. So, we need to play basketball, we want to play basketball."
As for naming a possible tournament consisting of below-.500 teams, we have a couple of ideas:
I'm coining this the Awful Eight https://t.co/BIDtYJGid3— Nicholas Wilson (@NickWilsonSays) July 2, 2020
somebody smarter than me called it the Delete Eight and that’s hard to beat.— Darin Gantt (@daringantt) July 2, 2020