The NBA is "angling" for a deal to shut down the rest of the season, sources told Brian Windhorst of ESPN.
"The talks between the players union and the league this week, I've talked to both sides of this issue, and it is clear that the NBA is angling to set up a deal that enables them to shut the season down," said Windhorst during an appearance on Sportscenter.
"Now they don't have to do that yet, and the way they're negotiating they're leaving themselves an option either way, but they're not having talks about how to restart the league, they're having financial talks about what would happen if the season shuts down, and I think there is a significant amount of pessimism right now," added Windhorst.
Windhorst pointed to the Chinese Basketball Association delaying their season as a blow to the NBA's hopes, citing a potential second wave of positive COVID-19 tests in the country caused by asymptomatic carriers.
The CBA delayed the start of their season earlier this week.
"It's been a bad week," said Windhorst. "I think there was optimism about progress a week ago. Some things that have happened this week have turned it south about what could happen. A big factor was what happened in China where they halted the return of their league."