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Memphis sports slowly making comeback from COVID-19 shutdown

The NBA announcing a return-to-play plan is just the latest and greatest sport to set date to resume

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Slowly but surely, sports are making a comeback.

The NBA players association voted to approve the league's 22-team plan to resume the 2019-2020 season Friday, beginning July 31 in Orlando, FL. The NBA board of governors approved the proposal Thursday.

The Grizzlies come back with a 3.5 game lead for the eighth seed.

"It's really exciting to have a date on the calendar where you're going to be playing basketball again," Grizzlies team president Jason Wexler told Local 24 Thursday.

"There hasn't been a time in my recollection where you literally didn't know where your next game was going to be. And now that we know July 31st we're playing basketball again, that's a fantastic feeling," Wexler said.

The NBA is just the latest and greatest sport to restart.

The USL announced their return Thursday. Details are expected in the coming weeks, but Memphis 901 FC is planning for a tentative start date of July 11.

Some private high school sports in Memphis just finished their first week of training since the COVID-19 outbreak. Football teams were limited to socially distant conditioning drills. They are moving forward without any form of certainty that a season will go on uninterrupted.

"We'll do everything in our power to keep it safe," said Thomas McDaniel, Christian Brothers High School head football coach. "Whether we play, we don't play, I'm not worried about any of that. I'm just glad to be back around them and have them back on campus."

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The Memphis Tigers launch Phase Zero of their return to campus Saturday with limited football players and staff. Youth baseball is entering its third weekend of tournaments. The World Golf Championships-FedEx St. Jude Invitational is still slated to take place in late July.

There are still many months ahead before we can put the pandemic in the rear view mirror, but at least for the near future, we will have sports to help us through.