Sleep deprivation in the NBA
IT'S THE AFTERNOON of Feb. 26, during a three-games-in-four-nights stretch, and Miami Heat center Hassan Whiteside is on a roll. Tomorrow night, his Heat will host the Golden State Warriors, then fly to Houston to face the Rockets on Feb. 28. But now he's rattling off what time the Warriors game will end (10 p.m.), when they'll board their flight (11:30 or later), when they'll land in Houston (2 a.m.) and arrive at the hotel -- he figures it'll be 3 -- before playing the Rockets later that day. "And that's just what we've got tomorrow," he says.
Fatigue has long been a reality of life in the NBA, a league with teams that play 82 games in under six months and fly up to 50,000 miles per season -- roughly 20,000 more miles each season than NFL teams and far enough to circle the globe twice. Over the 2018-19 season, the average NBA team played every 2.07 days, had 13.3 back-to-back sets and flew the equivalent of 250 miles a day for 25 straight weeks.ESPN story