Ok, I know this is several weeks late, but I'm just now getting around to looking at the schedule. Its always fun to print it out, circle the dates, and think about the games ahead. Here's some themes I'm seeing.
Banner Ceremony/Opening Day/LeBron James
What better way to start things off? First and foremost, we raise banner 17! That's what all of last year was all about. In fact, it is what the last 20+ years was about. Second, we kick off the Championship defense by playing against one of the best players in the league and the player everyone assumes will dominate the next decade (as soon as we're done with it). So the whole night will be a beautiful blend of the past, present, and future. I can't wait.
Early Season Roadies
We start off with two home games in October, then play 4 of the next 5 away from Boston capped off by the first game against the Pistons at the Palace on Nov. 9th. If the team is a little slower out of the blocks than last year, we can probably chaulk it up to two things. 1. the road schedule and 2. it would be hard to improve on an 8-0 start.
Coal In Kobe's Stocking
Celtics/Lakers on Christmas Day on ABC. The whole country is going to be excited about this one. At least until the Celtics roll up another 30 point lead and everyone switches over to the parade or starts putting the some-assembly-required toys together. This game also kicks off a 4 game West coast road trip for the C's. They'll be back just in time for New Year's.
No Texas Triangle Trip
One of the highlights of last year was the team messin' with Texas as they swept the Rockets, Spurs, and Mavericks in consecutive road games. Thus ending the Western dominance over the East and ushering in a new era in the NBA. Ok, maybe that's a bit melodramatic, but it sure felt that way last year. This year, the schedule makers decided to keep that from happening again.
Long Western Trip Around All Star Break
Every year there's a long Western swing, but this year's edition wraps nicely around the All Star break. The Celtics visit the Hornets and Mavs before the break. Then they get the Jazz, Suns, Nuggs, and Clippers after. Hard to complain about that. For added drama, the trade deadline is always sometime in February too. As always, we'll have our ears open for rumors of movement.
Right now I count 25 games scheduled to be on National TV. Everyone loves a winner. This is especially good news for our fans from out of town without access to League Pass.
Final Week of the Season
If this season goes anything like last season, these games will be meaningless tune up practices for the playoffs. If the other teams catch up or if we falter at some point, they could be critical for seeding purposes. Cleveland, Philly, and Washington all in a row.
Other Games I Circled:
- 10/31 - Chicago (ESPN) - I'm sure they'll rebound from last year. First look at top pick Rose.
- 11/10 - Toronto - I can't wait to see the Bosh/O'Neal dynamic.
- 11/18 - New York - Always fun when the circus is in town.
- 11/21 - at Minnesota - I'm also interested to see the Big Al/Kevin Love dynamic.
- 11/28 - Philadelphia - We'll see how well Brand fits in.
- 12/5 - Portland (ESPN) - Our first look at Greg Oden.
- 12/12 - New Orleans (ESPN) - The return of James Posey to Boston.
- 1/11 to 1/17 - Odd schedule: Back to back home/away with Raps and a home/away with the Nets.
- 2/5 - Los Angeles - We get to see the Lakers at home, where we left them last year.