As always, there was plenty of news, free agent signings, trades and, yes, drama, to get us through the long NBA offseason. But now, the time we’ve all been waiting for has finally arrived. It’s NBA opening week, and the league did not disappoint with this schedule. All the stars, all the great teams will be front and center on national TV this week.
Ahead of the games, here’s a look at the key matchups from opening week, and how you can watch them.
NBA 2018-19 opening week schedule
Tuesday, Oct. 16
Wednesday, Oct. 17
Thursday, Oct. 18
Friday, Oct. 19
Saturday, Oct. 20
- 7 p.m. ET: Toronto Raptors at Washington Wizards, NBA TV
- 10:30 p.m. ET: Houston Rockets at Los Angeles Lakers, ESPN
Sunday, Oct. 21
- 8 p.m. ET: Houston Rockets at Clippers, NBA TV
This schedule is just beautiful. On opening night you have a potential Eastern Conference finals preview with Sixers vs. Celtics, followed by two fierce rivals going at it on ring night in Thunder vs. Warriors.
The next night we get the new-look Pelicans taking on the new-look Rockets, followed by the favorite to win Rookie of the Year, Luka Doncic, going up against No. 1 overall pick Deandre Ayton in the first game for each player.
Just 24 hours later we get LeBron James‘ debut with the Lakers in what should be a raucous atmosphere in Portland. Then on Friday we have another potential Eastern Conference finals preview in Celtics vs. Raptors, followed by a heavyweight Western Conference battle between the Warriors and Jazz.
And that’s not all, as the weekend give us not only an interesting matchup between the Raptors and Wizards — a rematch of their first-round playoff series last season — but also the Rockets traveling to Los Angeles for LeBron’s home debut with the Lakers.
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