NBA Schedule 2021: Playoffs, All-Star Break and Key Dates Reportedly Revealed

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistNovember 15, 2020

Basketballs are lined up next to the stanchion before warmups for Game 3 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series between the Indiana Pacers and the Miami Heat, Saturday, Aug. 22, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kim Klement/Pool Photo via AP)
Kim Klement/Associated Press

The 2020-21 NBA schedule has begun to take shape with ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reporting the key dates:

The addition of a play-in tournament is similar to last year's series between the Portland Trail Blazers and Memphis Grizzlies, which lasted just one game as No. 8 Portland advanced. Wojnarowski provided the details:

The league announced last week the Board of Governors' approval of the Dec. 22 start of the season with a shortened 72-game schedule. It comes after a shortened offseason that will feature the NBA draft on Nov. 18, the start of free agency on Nov. 20 and players officially being able to sign contracts on Nov. 22.

The latest schedule also leaves out an All-Star Game, which Wojnarowski and Zach Lowe of ESPN previously reported could be removed.

The five-day break could offer rest for players during the condensed season or time to make up games lost due to COVID-19 outbreaks.

It will certainly be an unusual season for the players, especially considering the 2019-20 season only ended in October with the Los Angeles Lakers defeating the Miami Heat in the NBA Finals. The 71-day offseason will be the shortest ever among the four major sports, per Baxter Holmes of ESPN.

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On the other hand, the eight teams that missed the restart haven't played competitively since March, creating a layoff of more than eight months.

Organizations at least now have an outline for the upcoming season after plenty of uncertainty throughout the offseason.