We now know where the Dallas Mavericks will stay when the NBA resumes its season at Walt Disney World in Orlando Florida. The Mavericks, along with seven other teams will stay at the Grand Floridian Resort and Spa, according to the Athletic’s Shams Charania.
The seven other teams joining the Mavericks are the Oklahoma City Thunder, Philadelphia 76ers, Houston Rockets, Brooklyn Nets, Memphis Grizzlies, and Orlando Magic. Team hotel accommodations were selected based on seeding.
According to Disney, the Grand Floridian’s style is “Victorian elegance meets modern sophistication at this lavish Disney Resort hotel.” It is also conveniently located one stop away from Cinderella’s Castle in the Magic Kingdom if players want to hop on the complementary Resort Monorail to see the nightly fireworks display.
The accommodations are particularly important given some new details that emerged Tuesday evening. Charania reports that teams will play three scrimmage games against other NBA teams staying in their own hotel between July 22 and July 29. The remaining eight-game regular season schedule resumes July 31.
For what it’s worth, the Mavericks currently have a 10-4 record against the other teams staying in the Grand Floridian.
Of the three hotels where NBA teams will take up residence at Disney, the Grand Floridian is decidedly mid-tier based on its appearance. In fact, looking at all the hotels the players will reside in, it’s apparent that there’s an accommodation caste system. That presents a potential optics problem for the league, given the continued dialogue surrounding equity, or the lack thereof, in the country and the reticence of some players to play in Orlando due to concerns about housing.
That said, NBA players are all ‘haves’ and the hotels they are staying are nicer than most people’s homes. Disney World is a luxury resort, after all.
Top seeded teams will be staying in the Gran Destino Tower at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort. The tower, which touts a “beautiful lakeside oasis offer[ing] classic influences, Disney touches and modern comforts to energize and inspire as you delight in an array of new features, eateries and enhancements,” is clearly the crème-de-la-crème of hotels.
The Milwaukee Bucks, Los Angeles Lakers, Toronto Raptors, Los Angeles Clippers, Boston Celtics, Denver Nuggets, Utah Jazz, and Miami Heat will all get the opportunity to relax in the Lost City of Cibola pool, complete with a 50-foot replica of a Mayan pyramid.
Meanwhile, the teams on the outside of the playoff picture looking in, the Portland Trail Blazers, Sacramento Kings, New Orleans Pelicans, San Antonio Spurs, Phoenix Suns, and Washington Wizards, will stay in Disney’s Yacht Club Resort. It looks nice in pictures, but the name alone conjures images of empty peanut shells strewn haphazardly on the floor.
Also staying in the hotels will be the teams’ support staff. A contingent of 35 staff members and personnel will be permitted for each team. All 22 teams participating in the NBA’s restart must report to Disney and check into their hotels on July 7.
Disney’s Magic Kingdom park will begin a phased reopening for the public July 11. Hotel reservations are not available at this time.