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Suspended men's basketball season to resume after 4 weeks

All News 14:10 March 02, 2020

SEOUL, March 2 (Yonhap) -- The South Korean men's professional basketball league announced Monday that its regular season, halted since the weekend due to the new coronavirus, will resume at the end of this month.

Following its emergency board meeting, the Korean Basketball League (KBL) said its 10 teams will be back in action starting March 29.

The photo shows an empty Wonju Gymnasium in Wonju, 130 kilometers east of Seoul, on March 1, 2020, following the cancellation of a Korean Basketball League regular season game between the home team DB Promy and KCC Egis. (Yonhap)

To help curb the spread of the virus, the KBL first started playing regular season games behind closed doors last Wednesday. But on Saturday, it decided to put the season on hold, beginning with games scheduled for Sunday, after a guest who stayed at the same hotel as a KBL team, the KCC Egis, in Jeonju, 240 kilometers south of Seoul, tested positive for COVID-19.

KBL teams play 54 games per season, and they've so far played 42 or 43 games. The regular season was originally set to end on March 31.

Last week, three foreign players, two Americans and one Serbian, left their teams over coronavirus fears.

The KBL said if the situation with the virus improves in the coming days, the resumption of the season could come earlier than scheduled.

In a future meeting, the KBL will explore the possibility of holding games in neutral venues near Seoul and also discuss changes to the playoff schedule and format.

The first two rounds are best-of-five and the championship final is best-of-seven. The KBL could shorten the schedule, so that the first two stages will be best-of-three and the final becomes best-of-five.

This photo provided by the Korean Basketball League shows the home team SK Knights and ET Land Elephants playing a regular season game without spectators at Jamsil Students' Gymnasium in Seoul on Feb. 29, 2020. (PHOTO NOT FOR SALE) (Yonhap)


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