The Boston Celtics will be heading to Brooklyn, New York on Sunday to face the Brooklyn Nets in a matinee preseason game. The NBA will use the game as a guinea pig to see if playing a shorter game will be beneficial for the league in the future. The game on Sunday will only be a 44 minute contest instead of the typical 48 minutes, each quarter will be 11 minutes instead of the usual 12 minutes. The other change being made for the game is that the officials’ timeouts will be eliminated as well. Typically, the officials call a timeout about halfway through the 2nd and 4th quarters.
The NBA recently struck gold on new media deals with Turner Sports and ESPN that will last until the 2024-25 season. Nothing has been formally announced that the league will run the course of a 44 minute time frame for games during the regular season, but the preseason would be the best time to give it a run if anything. It will be interesting to see how reducing game times and timeouts will affect the flow of the game in Sunday’s contest. The NBA regular season is normally an 82-game season and shortening the game times may help reduce the wear and tear of the players around the league, plus maintain a high level of competition at the same time.
It’s too early to tell how this is going to play out and will take time to get used to if the NBA will go through with this plan in the near future, but I’ll be witnessing this project on Sunday to see how it goes.