The NBA released its schedule for the 2017-18 season this week and it included some interesting changes.
With the changes, it's clear that the league is making an effort to protect the marquee national TV matchups with the hope that star players are not rested on these nights.
One major change means there will no longer be stretches that include four games in five nights. There will also be fewer back-to-backs this season with 14.4 per team — down from 16.3 last year.
The issue of stars resting was a huge talking point last season as the best teams such as the Cleveland Cavaliers and Golden State Warriors rested stars like LeBron James and Steph Curry in televised games.
Commissioner Adam Silver promised that the league would address this and he was true to his word.
As well as protecting the live TV broadcasts, the changes will also reduce the wear and tear on players throughout a gruelling 26-week regular season campaign.
One man who is thrilled with the changes is Warriors head coach Steve Kerr who praised Silver for taking the team's concerns into consideration.
"That's the beauty of this schedule, is that the league and Adam Silver, they really listened to us," Kerr told 95.7 The Game's Damon Bruce. "They listened to our thoughts and our concerns and our complaints. Obviously adding a week to the calendar of the season helped quite a bit.
"But I think the league went beyond that and really did a good job of making sure that the schedule just made more sense -- taking the player's health into consideration."
The Warriors had 17 back-to-backs and one stretch of four games in five nights last season and it even included a period where they played eight games, in eight cities over a 13-day window.
Kerr was annoyed with that scheduling and decided to rest Curry, Draymond Green and Klay Thompson in the eighth and final game of that stretch, which happened to be a marquee matchup with the San Antonio Spurs on ABC.
The league was not happy with this and has now made the necessary changes to eradicate this for the upcoming campaign.
"I have zero complaints about our schedule and I think it's really a tribute to the work that Adam and the league do with the players and the union to try to work together to put together the best possible product for our fans," Kerr added. "Everything just checks out.
"Nobody in the league has a single stretch of four games in five nights."
This doesn't guarantee that teams won't still rest players, but it's nice to see that the NBA is making changes in an attempt to put the best product on the court for the fans.News Now - Sport News