On Tuesday, Dave McMenamin of ESPN reported that the Los Angeles Lakers had been in contact with local government officials about the possibility of re-opening their practice facility before May 15, when the safer at home order is expected to expire.
Now, the Lakers and the three other NBA teams in California — the LA Clippers, Sacramento Kings and Golden State Warriors — are taking it to the state level, according to a report from Sam Amick and Joe Vardon of The Athletic:
Sources say all four of the league’s California teams (Lakers, Clippers, Warriors, Kings) are hoping to convince Governor Gavin Newsom to include them in “Stage 2” of his reopening plan, perhaps with the help of the mayors in their respective cities. As Newsom detailed via Twitter on Tuesday, that stage would include “gradually reopening some lower-risk workplaces with adaptations.”
The hope, if he agreed to do so, is that those teams could return to their facilities by the third week in May.
Newsom first issued the state’s safer at home order on March 19. It was initially set to expire on April 19, but when it became clear that a month wasn’t long enough, Newsom pushed back the date and laid out a three-stage plan for re-opening.
We’re currently in the first stage, and the belief is that we could enter the second stage as soon as next month, which is why California’s NBA teams are making a push to re-open now. Their efforts can also be attributed to the fact that several states have already loosened their restrictions, meaning teams in other states could re-open their practice facilities before teams in California. If that does happen, though, it won’t be until May 8.
We’ll find out of the Lakers, Clippers, Kings and Warriors are successful in their collective effort sooner rather than later, but in any case, we shouldn’t expect actual games to be played for a little while longer — and if they games are played, it’s unlikely they’ll be played in California.