The Warriors front office and coaching staff reportedly will have a new element to consider next season in regards to the Golden State players’ health.
NBA owners are expected to approve player-resting rules devised to curtail teams benching players for rest in regular-season games, according to USA Today’s Jeff Zillgitt. Anticipated to be adopted at the next Board of Governors meeting, the rules would reportedly include consequences for teams that do not adhere to them.
(The good news is, the NBA already announced a reduction in back-to-back games and road trip length.)
This issue was discussed heavily at the last Board of Governors meeting, in April, after a couple high-profile cases of teams resting stars.
The practice of sitting stars — to lessen stress on their bodies amid the heaviest workload among players — has been around since Spurs coach Gregg Popovich sent four stars home (Tim Duncan, Manu Ginboli, Tony Parker and Danny Green) for more rest rather than play a game on TNT in 2012. Then-commissioner David Stern fined San Antonio $250,000 for what he called “a disservice to the league and our fans.”
The issue cropped up again, and seemed to gain steam, this past March. On consecutive Saturdays, the Warriors and Cavaliers each decided to rest some stars. Warriors coach Steve Kerr held out Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, Andre Iguodala and Draymond Green a week before Cavaliers coach Tyronn Lue did not play LeBron James, Kyrie Irving or Kevin Love — both for prime-time games on ABC.
NBA commissioner Adam Silver responded with a memo to NBA teams warning of “significant penalties” for teams who do not provide notice to the league office, their opponent and the media as soon as possible. He also called the practice of resting stars “an extremely significant issue for our league” — which is surely why the topic was much-discussed at the last Board of Governors meeting.
It sounds like NBA owners set up a new way to handle teams resting players, and it is about to be enacted.
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