Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

The NBA's Board of Governors approved Thursday the league's 22-team plan to resume play at Walt Disney World — a plan that also includes tentative dates for both this season and next.

Why it matters: The league's proposed trip to Disney World not only impacts this season but could have a domino effect that impacts seasons in the future — and could permanently change what time of year the NBA plays its games.

Calendar: These tentative dates, per ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski and The Athletic's Shams Charania, suggest that this year's champion could have less than a month off before next season begins.

  • Training camp: June 30
  • Travel to Orlando: July 7
  • Season restart: July 31
  • Draft lottery: Aug. 25
  • Season end: Oct. 12 (last possible date)
  • Draft: Oct. 15
  • Free agency: Oct. 18
  • 2020-21 training camp: Nov. 10
  • 2020-21 opening night: Dec. 1

The backdrop: Back in March, pre-coronavirus, Hawks CEO Steve Koonin proposed starting the NBA season in mid-December (rather than mid-October) and ending it in August (rather than June) to avoid having to compete with football in the fall, while dominating more of the summer months when the only other show in town is baseball.

  • Three months later, that plan is basically happening. The NBA listed Dec. 1 as next season's tentative start date, and unless teams play fewer games or some other adjustment is made, the season would likely end around August.
  • It's unclear if that would become the permanent NBA schedule, but it would certainly be easier to continue with December–August at that point than try to reset it back to October–June by cutting another offseason short.

The big picture: The NBA isn't the only league whose schedule has been upended by the coronavirus pandemic, which means we could be looking at a completely new sports calendar in 2020, 2021, and possibly beyond.

  • NHL: Last year, the Blues won the Stanley Cup on June 12. This year, hockey will be played in the heat of summer (weird) and we won't have a winner until the fall.
  • Premier League: The season was originally scheduled to end on May 17. Instead, it will restart on June 17 and end on July 25.
  • PGA Tour: Last year, the Masters was in early April and the season ended on Aug. 25. This year, the Masters is slated for mid-November and the season is scheduled to run through December.
  • MLB: Who knows what will end up happening here, but unlike the NBA and NHL, MLB doesn't have nearly as much scheduling flexibility because it's an outdoor sport and winter looms.

Go deeper

Jul 1, 2020 - Sports

Movies are out, sports are in

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

July is typically a quiet month for American sports. The kind of quiet that leads to routine double-plays making SportsCenter's "Top 10," and saw July get just 0.5% of votes in our pre-coronavirus "best sports month" poll (poor August got 0%).

The state of play: For Hollywood, it's quite the opposite. Studies suggest we're more likely to go to movies when the weather is warm and kids are out of school, so July is one of the biggest box-office months and a prime blockbuster release window.

Competitors ready to pounce on TikTok bans

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Growing security and privacy concerns over Chinese-owned short-video app TikTok have given a lift to alternatives like Byte and Dubsmash, which have seen spikes in downloads from smartphone users recently, according to data from SensorTower.

Why it matters: If TikTok's meteoric rise in popularity among U.S. youth gets slowed by rising tensions with China, or ended by a threatened ban by the Trump administration, American teens will still have to get their hits of meme-laden video somewhere.

38 mins ago - Technology

U.S. pushes homegrown drone industry amid China battle

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Alarmed at the prospect of relying on Chinese-made drones for public safety and monitoring critical industries, U.S. investors and the federal government are newly backing a domestic drone industry of hardware and software companies.

The big picture: The moves come as the industry continues to be led by DJI, a Chinese hardware maker — and as concerns grow both in China and the U.S. about reliance on the other country's technology.