Ahhh schedule release day. Nothing quite like it. You know you are a diehard Celtic nerd when you gleefully print off 2 or 3 copies of the schedule (one for circling dates, one to hang on the wall, and maybe one to put in your wallet or briefcase). Speaking of nerds, maybe someone can help me figure out how to load the dates into my google calendar - but I digress.
By now you know that the Celtics open against Cleveland and their home opener is against the Bobcats. Here's some additional bullet points I've come up with by circling dates and reading articles and blogs.
The season seems to be breaking up into 3 parts. Home a lot at first, on the road a lot during the middle months, and then back home for the stretch. Here's how Celtics.com describes it.
Boston will play 10 of its first 16 games on their home parquet this season, with their longest road trip being two-games in that span. Following that stretch of home games, the C's will get a lot of their road schedule out of the way, and quickly. Their stretch from the end of November thru the beginning of January is as brutal as they come. During that time frame, Boston will play 14 of its 19 games on the road. That includes two different stints in which they will play seven of eight games on the road. In the month of December, the Celtics will play in the Garden only four times.
If the C's can manage to get through that stretch healthy and with a solid record, they will be in great shape for the remainder of the season. Their season-long five-game road trip comes in the middle of February and spans 11 days, but other than that, they will not be on the road for more than three consecutive games at any point after Jan. 10. In fact, they'll actually play 17 of their final 28 games in front of their home faithful in preparation for the playoffs, including a season-long six-game homestand from March 24-April 4.
Some more bullet points:
- Cavs: Play them opening night, but then not again until 2/25. Also on 3/14 and 4/4 (Easter Sunday).
Lakers: At home on 1/31 then in LA on 2/18.
- Magic: Christmas Day game! Also 11/20, 1/28, 2/7 (Super Bowl Sunday).
- St. Patrick's Day - get ready to see the Knicks in green again.
- Sheed returns to Deeeetroit on Jan 20.
- Third game of the season is a rematch with those pesky Bulls.
- I'm picking the Spurs to be our Finals opponent, so I should point out that we play them 12/3 and 3/28.
- Adding to the confusion of that rough Feb. road trip will be the trade deadline activity.
- The Celtics, Lakers, and Magic are on National TV (ABC, ESPN or TNT) 24 times. Cavs top them all with 25 appearances.