• The NBA is considering to hold games behind closed doors when the season resumes
  • LeBron James rued the absence of fans will make games less exciting
  • Hostile home fans drive visiting teams to be competitive, said James

The NBA is reportedly heading towards holding games behind closed doors when it resumes its season for a date still unknown. The unforeseen entry of the Coronavirus Disease has caused league executives to take more comprehensive measures to ensure the safety of players, staff, and personnel.

But there is always the downside of every move. The blow on the financial aspect of the business is now beginning to be felt, and it will get worse when games without spectators in arenas commence.

A compromised experience and a downgrade in entertainment quality will soon follow suit, and LeBron James, still arguably the face of the NBA, is aware of it.

The Los Angeles Lakers star forward emphasized the importance of having fans inside arenas during games, saying the absence thereof would also result in the absence of any kind of emotion, which, for him, is the real essence of any sport.

"What is the word 'sport' without 'fan'?" James asked during a conference call with Richard Jefferson, Channing Frye, and Allie Clifton on the Road Trippin’ Podcast published on Thursday.

"There's no excitement. There's no crying. There's no joy. There's no back-and-forth,” he added, as transcribed by ESPN, before specifically pointing out the impact of home fans to the visiting teams’ competitive drive that in turn makes every game more thrilling to watch.

"That's what also brings out the competitive side of the players to know that you're going on the road in a hostile environment and yes, you're playing against that opponent in front of you, but you really want to kick the fans' ass too,” the four-time MVP said.

"So to get back on the floor, I would love it. I'm not going to sit here and say nothing. Like, if it's getting out there and get back on the floor 5-on-5. But like, we can do that in scrimmages. Let's just go to each other's practice facility, put out a camera, just scrimmage and live stream it. I just don't know how we can imagine a sporting event without fans. It's just, it's a weird dynamic."

As James sent his sentiments across, he also mentioned, whether impliedly or in jest, that getting back on the court will be never the same as it used to be.

"So what happens when a guy who is tested positive for corona and you're out there on the floor with him and it's a loose ball?" he said. "I ain't high-fiving nobody for the rest of my life after this s---. No more high-fiving. After this corona s---? Wait 'til you see me and my teammates' handshakes after this s---."

No fans, no play: LeBron James
LeBron James and other NBA Superstars participated on a private conference call Monday (May 10) GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / Harry How