Portland Trail Blazers: Carmelo, McCollum worried about NBA’s return plan

Carmelo Anthony, Hassan Whiteside, Portland Trail Blazers (Photo by Alika Jenner/Getty Images)
Carmelo Anthony, Hassan Whiteside, Portland Trail Blazers (Photo by Alika Jenner/Getty Images) /

In a recent call, senior NBA players joined Portland Trail Blazers Carmelo Anthony and CJ McCollum in expressing concerns over restarting the NBA season.

In a call led by Kyrie Irving and Chris Paul, Portland Trail Blazers, Zach Collins, Carmelo Anthony and CJ McCollum joined around 80 other NBA players in expressing their concern around the NBA restarting its season.

NBA Insider, Shams Charania of The Athletic, broke the news on Friday that Kevin Durant, Dwight Howard and Donovan Mitchell joined other big names on the call who spoke in depth about how they feel uncomfortable about the season resuming amid the backdrop of civil unrest after the tragic death of George Floyd, as well as the coronavirus pandemic.


Anthony spoke on this call, as a senior NBA player and strong voice in these difficult times, he suggested all 80 players on the call donate $25,000 to a cause that they felt fit, while also stressing unity and the need for the younger players to have a voice.

We have seen McCollum speak previously about the risks of returning amid COVID-19, but this time on the call he spoke about players being prepared for the financial hit that could come with players refusing to pay. And the fact that the owners could tear up the CBA, thus meaning a potential lockout.

When you add in Damian Lillard‘s powerful protest in Portland and his interview with Vanity Fair, Blazers players have made themselves heard over the last month.

When touching on the season resumption though, the players worries are justified. Mitchell was worried about players getting injured after not playing five-on-five for so long. The social distancing is also a concern as Disney Staff can come and go from Disney World in Orlando and won’t be part of the carefully put-together bubble.

Shams also detailed a massive bombshell that was dropped on the call, the players association expect that there will be no fans in NBA arenas for not just this season, but for the 2020/21 season as well.

If 80-plus players are concerned that about the NBA returning amid the protesting, and uncertainty around COVID-19, then potentially we don’t see the NBA return like we thought we would a week ago.

Next. Portland Trail Blazers: Game-for-game picks and analysis of the eight-game schedule. dark

Adam Silver has said that players won’t be forced to play in Orlando if they don’t want to. For some players this may be the case, as when social issues are on their minds it’s hard to have basketball as a priority in their lives.

More details are to be released on the Disney Orlando plan. Until then, the NBA season is up in the air.