The NBA has had enough with DNP (rest).
The league released a memo to teams that outlined changes in scheduling, which are aimed toward alleviating the stress of travel and multiple games with little rest, according to ESPN’s Brian Windhorst.
NBA broadcasts—particularly nationally televised games—have been marred by teams’ deciding to rest healthy star players with increasing frequency. These schedule changes are intended to allow the players to rest more, which will hopefully disincentivize teams from resting their stars.
Per Windhorst, teams will no longer have any stretches of four games in five nights or 18 games in 30 days, and single-game road trips and backs-to-backs will be reduced. There will be only 11 games total for which a team travels more than 2,000 miles for a single road game.
How are these changes possible? The league’s schedule is one week longer this year—it will start earlier than normal in October. This change was built in to the new Collective Bargaining Agreement, which was reached late in 2016 and went into effect on July 1.
Commissioner Adam Silver has shown a commitment to extending the NBA season. In 2014, the NBA All-Star break was extended from a few days to a full week, a move that was well-received by players.
The NBA schedule is expected to be finalized this week and should be released shortly thereafter.