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NBA explores idea of moving back draft
Posted By HOOPSWORLD On June 28, 2013 @ 3:34 pm In Wirenews | Comments Disabled
by Jeff Zillgitt, USA TODAY Sports
NEW YORK – The NBA is exploring the idea of pushing back its annual draft at least a week, a person with direct knowledge of discussions between the league and its TV partners told USA TODAY Sports.
The person requested anonymity because he was not authorized to speak publicly about ongoing talks between the NBA and ABC/ESPN and Turner Broadcasting, the parent company of TNT and NBA TV.
The NBA believes it can turn the draft into a bigger event and showcase its new players and generate more interest in the draft by creating more distance between the conclusion of the Finals and the draft. The hangover from the Finals lingers into draft week, suppressing some of the drama, excitement and coverage leading up to the event.
NBA and ABC/ESPN and Turner executives began preliminary discussions during the playoffs about the next TV deal – the current deal expires after the 2015-16 season – and moving the draft back was part of the talks.
However, there is concern that moving the draft will extend an already long NBA year. Pushing the draft back would also delay the start of free agency and the popular summer leagues in Orlando and Las Vegas.
The league wants to avoid dragging a significant portion of free agency and summer leagues into August. If the NBA can find a way to wrap up most of free agency and the summer leagues by the end of July, it will continue to explore the idea.
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