The idea of a midseason NBA tournament got new life when it was brought up on a league competition committee call on Monday.
The tournament would be a standalone event with prizes of $1 million per player for the winning team.
The concept was floated in June as a way to create excitement in the middle of the season.
- At the time, the discussions centered around an eight-team contest featuring three single-elimination rounds.
- League officials have also discussed incentivizing players with donations to player charities, particularly social justice-oriented ones. Draft picks could also be put at stake.
- The WNBA completed its first midseason tournament, the Commissioner’s Cup, in August. The Seattle Storm won $30,000 per player, and the runner-up Connecticut Sun earned $10,000 per player. The final game was broadcast by Amazon.
A midseason tournament could present new opportunities for media partnerships as the NBA negotiates its next broadcasting contracts.
The league is believed to be seeking $75 billion over nine years in new deals – more than triple its current deals with Disney and WarnerMedia which total $24 billion.