During Thursday's press conference discussing the current state of the NBA lockout, commissioner David Stern said that if the players' union accepts the league's current offer after meeting with player representatives early next week, a 72-game regular season could begin on December 15. With that, the playoff and Finals would each be pushed back one week, giving the regular season a bit more space to breathe.
But such a schedule would still be more jam-packed than the suffocating 1998-99 50-game season.
A normal 82-game season starts around the beginning of November and ends in mid-April, encompassing 5-1/2 months. That gives us just about 15 games per month per team. The lockout-shortened '98-99 season crammed 50 regular season games into almost exactly three months, for 16.7 games per month per team.
A 72-game schedule starting December 15 and ending after the third week in April would give us 72 games in 4.25 months, or 17 games per month per team.
If the players take the deal, expect plenty of back-to-backs, a few back-to-back-to-backs and little time for television that is not basketball.