The NBA is getting very clever during the coronavirus shutdown in its efforts to bring viewers some live basketball content.
According to Adrian Wojnarowski, the NBA and ESPN are working in conjunction to bring viewers a live H-O-R-S-E event with NBA players shooting their shots in their respective home gyms/basketball courts.
The general plan seems to be that players will stream themselves shooting from their home courts and then their competitors will match the shot. If you’re reading this, you probably know the rules of H-O-R-S-E, so we don’t have to explain the technicalities of that.
Logistical problems have arisen though as some of the more major names in the NBA like Giannis don’t have a private court at their homes or don’t even have a basketball hoop. This could severely limit who could actually compete in the event. It’s probably only some of the bigger players in the league though who could even afford to build a private court in their sprawling estates.
One of the suggested formats from fans on Twitter is that younger stars in the league should compete against retired superstars like a Michael Jordan or Magic Johnson. This could definitely make for some entertaining television and would certainly be a leg-up from the lackluster NBA 2K Players Tournament.
You have to respect the attempt by ESPN and the NBA to salvage some of the lost tv ad revenue that they’re missing out on by not broadcasting live games. It has been reported that ESPN could lose somewhere in the range of $800-$900 million dollars in ad revenue due to the lack of live games. This could help both parties recoup some of those losses.