With the suspension of the 2019-2020 NBA season due to the Coronavirus (COVID-19), reports state that the league and ESPN are teaming up to televise a H-O-R-S-E competition with a number of high-profile basketball players.
According to ESPN Senior NBA Insider Adrian Wojnarowski, the NBA, NBPA and ESPN have been discussing the competition. “Players would shoot in isolation – presumably in home gyms – and match shots against competitors,” he wrote on Twitter. No player names were revealed, with Woj further stating that details are “still being finalized.”
The NBA has been suspended for almost a month after Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert tested positive for COVID-19. Woj noted on ESPN that the reinstatement of the season is highly unlikely and that current league isolation protocols forbid players to compete in the same location.
A game of H-O-R-S-E is fairly simple, with the first player shooting the basket from anywhere on the court. If the first player is successful, the second player must make the shot from the same position. If the first player is unsuccessful, however, the second player is free to make the shot from anywhere. Whenever a player misses a shot they were required to duplicate, a letter is given and this pattern continues until one player gains all five letters.