Oklahoma City Thunder’s Chris Paul says weeks of prep time needed before games

If the NBA establishes a plan to restart in the coming months, it will need to include a "at least" three or four week lead for players to prepare to play, Oklahoma City Thunder guard Chris Paul said Wednesday.

"I'm just letting you know – and I don't think the league would do it anyway – but if they said, 'Hey, you have two weeks and then let's go', it won't happen.", Said Paul, who is serving his seventh year as president of the National Association of Basketball Players, during a conference call. "It will not happen. Whatever the amount of time, just know that the players will have a stake, so to speak, because we are the ones who are playing. It happens first. We never want to put guys in a situation where risk of injuries is greater than ever ".

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Since the NBA season was suspended on March 11, after Rudy Gobert with a positive result for coronavirus, many players did not have access to training facilities or even basketball goals. Paul said he hasn't played at a basketball academy since the ranks before his team's game against Jazz on March 11.

Charlotte Hornets Coach James Borrego told reporters on Wednesday that he thought players would need "several weeks" to get back into the basketball format for the game's action. He noted that, unlike previous work stops, such as a blocking season, players do not play regular 5 against 5 against anyone.

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Brian Windhorst of ESPN reported last week that a 25-day program was proposed in which players would spend 11 days of individual training that would include a measure of social distance and, if allowed by medical officers, a formal training camp for two. weeks.

"I understand what we're dealing with now, a lot of chances, but I don't know," said Paul when asked how long players would need to get back into basketball form. "It’s the case of having 450 players in the league and being in a situation like this, where some guys have access to weight rooms, others don’t. Some guys have access to facilities where they can train or do this or can That’s why , whatever happens – and I say this and I mean this -, we always come back to the players ".

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Paul was careful not to discuss hypothetical situations at length, such as a return to a possible quarantine "bubble" or whether he would agree to go directly to the playoffs, with no more regular season games.

"We just want to play," said Paul. "We are trying to figure out what that is like. At the moment, I am just focused on playing, playing in some way or fashion."

"This is a situation where no one knows. The virus is really in complete control. I tried seriously to answer things as best I could, but there are things where it's not like I have the answers and I'm just not saying." you."

Associated Press information was used in this report.

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