A 7.1-magnitude earthquake rocked a large swath of the Southwest, canceling NBA Summer League games and stopping a WNBA game in Las Vegas and being felt at other sports events in the city and in baseball stadiums in California.
The earthquake was centered near Ridgecrest, California, the same place where a 6.4-magnitude earthquake hit on Thursday.
The earthquake rattled Las Vegas’ Thomas & Mack Center, causing the scoreboard and speakers over the court to sway, and the league officials decided in favor of caution.
The New Orleans Pelicans and New York Knicks were early in the fourth quarter of their opening-day game when the earthquake hit. The Pelicans were ahead 80-74 with 7:53 left, and both teams left the court. It started as a delay with the hope the game could resume, but after further discussion, the Pelicans-Knicks game and Denver Nuggets-Phoenix Suns games were postponed.
Summer League games in the Cox Pavilion next door to the Thomas & Mack Center continued, mainly because that gym does not have a scoreboard and speakers over the court. But the NBA eventually stopped the Orlando Magic-San Antonio Spurs, with Orlando ahead 75-59, as a precaution.
The NBA later announced that all three of those games would not be played. The Pelicans and the Magic were declared winners.
The Athletic reported that Commissioner Adam Silver wanted to have a structural engineer examine the two arenas before deciding whether to hold the remaining scheduled games. Summer League officials said late Friday that Saturday’s games were still on schedule, but they wanted to make sure the arenas were safe for fans and players.