Milwaukee Bucks announce reopening of practice facility

MILWAUKEE, WI - APRIL 30: (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)
MILWAUKEE, WI - APRIL 30: (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images) /

As teams around the NBA work toward returning to some form of basketball activities, the Milwaukee Bucks announced the reopening of their practice facility on Monday.

It may be some time yet before the Milwaukee Bucks and the rest of the NBA get back to any true sense of normality during the current coronavirus pandemic, but the first signs of progress have at least presented themselves on Monday.

With multiple teams around the NBA already back in practice facilities over the past few days, as expected, the Bucks have moved forward in that same vein, in spite of Wisconsin’s Stay at Home regulations remaining in place for two more weeks at least.

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By no means is this a full opening, as strict restrictions will remain in place, in line with the NBA’s wider guidelines for the reopening of team facilities.

The basic details of those were outlined in a statement from Bucks general manager Jon Horst, which was released via the team’s social media channels to announce the franchise’s decision to allow players back into the Froedtert & Medical College of Wisconsin Sports Science Center:

"“Under the guidance of the NBA, our players have modified access to the Froedtert & Medical College of Wisconsin Sports Science Center for voluntary treatment, performance training and rehabilitation.”"

As has been detailed in previous reports, and was reiterated in NBA commissioner Adam Silver’s call with the NBPA and the players on Friday, any workouts held by teams at the moment must be strictly voluntary.

Players are permitted to work out separately, with only small numbers allowed into the facility at any one time, and only a limited number of assistant coaches or player development personnel allowed to be present to supervise those workouts.

Head coaches are not permitted to attend or observe any workouts, meaning Mike Budenholzer will remain strictly uninvolved as Bucks players get their first opportunity to get any kind of structured, basketball related workouts in since the season was called to a halt two months ago.

What’s important to note in the Bucks’ decision to allow players to practice again is that it should not be read as an obvious move toward a resumption of the season. As ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne noted last week:

"“This is by no means ramping up towards something. It’s more about mental health than anything at this point.”"

The move could certainly help players to have improved conditioning if such a scenario was to present itself, perhaps cutting down on the time needed for a mini camp of sorts ahead of actual games being played.

Mostly, though, this is viewed as being a proactive step from the NBA to keep players in safe, controled environment, rather than creating a temptation for players to seek out any public facilities that may be open in certain states.

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Considering that a number of notable Bucks had shared that they lacked the ability to shoot at their homes, there’s little doubt that many of them will glad to have access to the team’s facilities once again.