On Friday, several NBA teams will reopen their practice facilities, but according to Frank Vogel, the Los Angeles Lakers will not be among them.
Vogel said that one reason why his team won’t be opening its facilities yet is that he feels the league is not even close to resuming play.
“There’s a competitive balance element to this that I personally am not really all that concerned about,” Vogel said on a video conference call with reporters on Wednesday. “I think we’re still a long way away from returning to play.”
A more practical reason why the Lakers won’t be reopening their practice facilities this week is that local restrictions prevent them from doing so. The county of Los Angeles currently has a stay-at-home order that will be in place until at least May 15.
County officials announced that restrictions would be loosened very slightly on Friday, but such modifications to the county’s stay-at-home orders still won’t allow the Lakers to reopen their facilities.
According to ESPN, coach Vogel is still “optimistic” that the NBA will find a way to eventually resume the season. The coach said that, in his opinion, there would need to be some type of transition before starting the postseason.
“I think we need some games,” Vogel said. “I don’t know if they’d have to be regular-season games, in terms of finishing the season. Maybe they’re exhibition games, you know what I mean, that you treat as sort of your dress rehearsal or whatever.
“I think for the health of the league and for the health of everyone involved, the more we can get in for our league and our fans, the better. So I think if there’s a way to get regular-season games in, that would be great, but safety’s going to be the top priority. But the biggest thing for me is that there’s got to be at least some exhibition games, which I think there would be.”
The Lakers coach said he has been spending time binge-watching some of his favorite TV shows but has also been reviewing game video in order to be prepared if, or when, play resumes.