Now that NBA the season is upon us, the most oft-considered repercussion of the compacted schedule has been for whom is it an advantage. Fresh legs? Sharp minds? Old teams?
On media day Flip Saunders was asked if a youthful team brings any benefits to a scrambled environment in the aftermath of the 2011 lockout. ”I think if you have youth, you’re going to say yes, and if you have veterans, you’re going to say yes,” he said, implying that you can cook the perspective to whatever degree you like.
As with any NBA season, normal length or not, if a team is hit with the injury bug too harshly or with bad timing, it can significantly affect results. With a slate of 66 games in just 122 days, injuries are now more likely. Neither young nor old are immune. Sure, less aged muscles can recuperate faster, but those benefits are not as effective without proper time to recover.
“We just have to make sure that they can get the proper rest when they’re not playing,” said Saunders, “and so that’s going to be a main focus of what we’ll try to do too.”
“We got to really listen in and focus in on film session and listen to what the coaches are saying because there’s not going to be a lot of time to practice on the floor,” said Rashard Lewis, a veteran of the last NBA lockout, the shortened season afterward being his 1998-99 rookie campaign with the Seattle Supersonics.