Data: NBA; Table: Axios Visuals

An NBA plan to send 22 teams to Disney World — the top 13 from the West and the top nine from the East — for an eight-game regular season beginning July 31, followed by a postseason, has been approved by the league's board of governors, the NBA announced Thursday.

  • Traditional playoffs: Top eight from each conference, four rounds, etc.
  • Play-in tournament: If the No. 9 seed is within four games of the No. 8 spot, a play-in tournament will be held between the two teams.

What they're saying: A 22-team format that includes regular-season games is "worth several hundred million dollars more in revenue than the 16-team straight-to-playoffs plan," league sources told ESPN.

"While the COVID-19 pandemic presents a formidable challenge, we are hopeful of finishing the season in a safe and responsible manner based on strict protocols now being finalized with public health officials and medical experts. We also recognize that as we prepare to resume play, our society is reeling from recent tragedies of racial violence and injustice, and we will continue to work closely with our teams and players to use our collective resources and influence to address these issues in very real and concrete ways."
— NBA commissioner Adam Silver on the approval of the 22-team format

What's next: The plan now needs a green light from the players' association.

Go deeper: How Disney World could host the NBA

Go deeper

6 players test positive for coronavirus before MLS comeback tournament

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Six FC Dallas players have tested positive for the coronavirus in the last four days after arriving in Orlando, Florida, the team and Major League Soccer announced on Wednesday.

Why it matters: The league announced last month that it will return to action on July 8 with all 26 teams competing in a 54-game, 35-day, World Cup-style tournament at Disney World, Axios' Kendall Baker reports.

3 mins ago - Health

Texas governor mandates face masks in public spaces

Photo: Mario Tama/Getty Images

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) issued an executive order Thursday requiring all Texans to wear a face covering in public in counties with 20 or more positive coronavirus cases.

Why it matters: It's a stark reversal for the Republican governor that underscores the seriousness of the outbreak in Texas, which set a single-day record on Wednesday with more than 8,000 confirmed new cases. On June 3, Abbott issued an executive order banning local governments from imposing fines on people who don't wear masks in public.

This story is developing. Please check back for updates.

19 mins ago - Health

Top business leaders urge White House to develop mandatory mask guidelines

A man walks past a Ramen restaurant in Los Angeles, California on July 1. Photo: Frederic J. Brown/AFP via Getty Images

The heads of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Business Roundtable, National Retail Federation and other top business organizations wrote an open letter on Thursday urging the White House coronavirus task force to work with governors to make face coverings mandatory in all public spaces.

Driving the news: An analysis led by Goldman Sachs' chief economist found that a national mandate requiring face coverings would "could potentially substitute for lockdowns that would otherwise subtract nearly 5% from GDP," the Washington Post reports.