The NBA’s board of governors formally approved a deal for a shortened 2020-2021 season on Tuesday, and the new campaign will begin on December 22.
An NBA statement said the league’s board of directors unanimously approved adjustments to the current collective bargaining agreement, which has been affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.
The statement said the league will continue to negotiate with the National Basketball Players Association on other aspects of the upcoming season.
Under an agreement reached Monday, the NBPA and the league agreed that each team will play a 72-game schedule.
The agreement limits potential player pay reductions due to the pandemic to no more than 20% and, at that level, they extend up to three seasons.
In the 2020-21 campaign, the salary cap level for clubs would be $ 109,140 million with a tax on club salaries exceeding $ 132,627 million.
In future seasons, the salary cap and the tax level would increase by 3-10% over the previous season, and tax payments would be cut in proportion to decreases in income.
Free agency negotiations would begin on November 20 and allowed signatures would begin on November 22.
The Dec. 22 start date means the NBA can retain its lucrative list of televised games on Christmas Day.
Starting in December also allows the league to complete the playoffs before the rescheduled Olympics in mid-July, meaning the league’s best players will be available for selection in Tokyo.
The new season will begin just over two months after the conclusion of the 2019-2020 season interrupted by the pandemic.
The Los Angeles Lakers were crowned 2020 champions after the season resumed in July after a four-month hiatus.
Although the teams restarted the season in a single, safe “bubble” location in Orlando, Florida, the next season is expected to take place with teams playing at their home venues.