While the actual NBA season is still nearly three months away, we got our first look at the NBA schedule Tuesday evening. And although injuries can change the importance of any match-up, it's still an entertaining exercise to give the new schedule a once over!
For starters, the Bobcats will kick off their season in Houston against Dwight Howard and James Harden October 30. Rockets fans will get a first look at the Bobcats' frontcourt of the future: Cody Zeller and Al Jefferson! The Bobcats' home opener, however, is November 1 against Kyrie Irving and the Cleveland Cavaliers. Six months later, Charlotte will wrap up its 2014 season at home against the Bulls (bench) April 16.
Kevin Durant and the Thunder make their lone appearance in the Queen City December 27 in what may (or may not) contribute to a very merry Christmas for Bobcats fans. The Los Angeles Lakers come to town December 14, before the Los Angeles Clippers arrive five weeks later on January 22 -- Byron Mullens' return to Charlotte.
The Bobcats' longest stretch away from home is from December 28 to January 4. The trip begins in Atlanta but takes a turn westward as the Bobcats play in Utah, Los Angeles, Portland and Sacramento. One the other hand, their longest homestand is three games -- at various points in the season -- but there is a fun stretch from January 18 to January 25 where they host the Heat, Raptors and Clippers, then head to New York for a night and then get right back home to play the Spurs and Mavericks.
The Bobcats will have a home-away series against Josh Smith's Detroit Pistons January 18 and 19. All-in-all, the 'Cats play 21 back-to-backs (the most in the NBA this season), including three in February with a night off in between each set. Mercifully, there are no back-to-back-to-backs slated for the 2014 season.
Another tough stretch? Following six days off, the Bobcats will play the Spurs February 28 before playing their next four against Oklahoma City, Miami, Indiana and Cleveland. Talk about a meat grinder. Sheesh. Nothing like four straight games against championship contenders to potentially shatter any and all remaining confidence in your team.
Steph Curry's annual homecoming is December 9 and I know I'm getting tickets for the Bobcats' January 10 game in Minneapolis.
I just can't wait until they get into camp and playing preseason games because then we get to talk about real basketball. For now, let's nitpick the schedule in the comments section!
You can see the rest of the Bobcats' schedule here.