Earlier this year
Clarifying the Kings complaints
Bogut and P Smith both complained that the NBL failed to really take any decisions or actions in relation to the impact of coronavirus on the grand final series. They cited that it was the clubs who appeared to be driving decisions.
The way I see it, the league did make a decision. That decision was, in the absence of mutual agreement between all parties, the grand final series would continue on as planned, Government instruction permitting. Being cognisant of the fast-changing environment, it made sense that certain aspects were discussed though. These were:
- Playing with no crowd in Game 2 (the Government had just announced the ban on mass gatherings, but only to take effect from the following Monday; Game 2 was on a Friday, so there was a decision to be made). Mutual agreement between everyone for no crowds in Game 2, so that was what happened;
- Accelerating the conclusion of the series. Options included:
- Best of 3 series. Kings were not interested in this option;
- Following G3, playing Game 4 (and 5 if required) ahead of the originally
planned schedule. Kings were not interested in this option.
- Playing the series in one location to reduce travel. Unclear how this discussion progressed.
- Using chartered planes to reduce infection risk. Kings state this option was only offered very late in the piece (after they'd already made their mind up).
On the whole of it, it doesn't appear the Kings have that much to complain about. They wanted the league to take a unilateral stance in view of the coronavirus, the league preferred a collaborative approach, with the fall back in the absence of an agreement being to play the series as per the original schedule.
I don't really understand the Kings' complaints about the league not making a decision, when the most logical decision would've been to shorten the series, which the league has stated Sydney was not in favour of in any case.
So what actually is it that Bogut and Smith are complaining about?