Here are the stories shaping sports and business on Thursday, June 4.
NFL Coaching Staff Can Return, But Not Players
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell sent a memo to all 32 teams announcing coaching staff can start returning to team facilities on June 5. However, players are not yet allowed to return.
Unlike the NBA, NHL, MLB, and college sports which all had to cancel or postpone their seasons due to the coronavirus, the NFL was left virtually unscathed. While they did have to host the NFL Draft remotely with coaches and broadcasters appearing from their homes, the NFL was the only professional sport in America that wasn’t forced to cancel actual games.
With the season scheduled to start in September and training camp in mid-July, this is another sign that football will be back as planned in 2020.
A Coronavirus Update
There are 6.5 million cases of the coronavirus worldwide, with over 387,000 deaths. There are 1.8 million cases in the U.S., with over 107,000 deaths. Brazil has 584,000 cases and 32,000 deaths.
The Labor Department said 1.877 million Americans filed jobless claims for the week ended May 30, down from the 2.126 million claims for the week earlier, as states continued to slowly reopen after more than two-and-a-half months of being shuttered amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Economists polled by FactSet had been expecting 1.8 million claims up to last Saturday.
More than 45 million applications for unemployment benefits have been submitted since the coronavirus pandemic began in March, government records show, a number never before seen in history, including during the Great Depression.
Continuing claims, which is the number of people not just filing but staying on unemployment benefits, came in at 21.487 million for the week ended May 16. The continuing claims numbers are reported with a one-week lag, but are considered a better gauge of the labor market.
Now that the NBA has plans in place to resume its season on July 31 in Orlando, Florida, we have updated odds on which team will win the NBA Championship.
LeBron James and the Lakers are tied as the current favorites with the Milwaukee Bucks at +250. Meaning for every $100 you bet, you’ll win back an additional $250 if they win. The Clippers are at +333, Rockets at +1,200 and the Boston Celtics round out the top five at +2,000.
The Washington Wizards, Sacramento Kings, Phoenix Suns and Orlando Magic are all at the bottom of the list with 250-to-1 odds (+25,000).