Raptors will hold training camp outside of Canada to avoid quarantine rule: report

Jun 16 2020, 4:52 pm

The Toronto Raptors will soon call Florida Gulf Coast University home next month, according to a report from The Athletic’s Shams Charania, as the only Canadian team in the NBA deals with some unique circumstances.

With the NBA set to restart its season at the end of July, players will soon be returning to their team’s home cities for training camp. The lone exception among the 22 teams participating in the restart are the Raptors, who face difficulties surrounding Canada’s mandatory 14-day quarantine rule.

Canada’s quarantine rule would interrupt many players’ fitness routines, which is being seen as a non-starter for both the NBA and NHL. While Canada is willing to waive the quarantine rule for the NHL, that’s because of the league’s assurance that players would be kept in a bubble with frequent testing. This won’t be the case for the NBA until teams report to Disney World.

All players are required to return to their home team’s cities, except for Toronto, by June 22, with mandatory testing beginning the next day on June 23. The Raptors will instead set up shop in Naples, Florida, using Alico Arena on the Florida Gulf Coast University campus.

Naples is a short flight from Orlando, where teams will report to Disney World July 7 to 9. Games will be played at ESPN’s Wide World of Sports Complex at the Disney resort, with teams staying in one of three hotels.

Charania reports that teams will be grouped in hotels based on their playoff seeding, with the Raptors staying in the same hotel as the likes of LeBron James, Kawhi Leonard, and Giannis Antetokounmpo.

Rather than a “bubble,” the NBA is referring to the setup as a “campus,” with a number of things planned to keep athletes entertained during their spare time, as Charania outlines below.

Yes, this is what sports looks like in 2020.