As the NBA continues to move toward starting its 2020-21 season on Dec. 22, a slate of 49 preseason games will be played from Dec. 11 through Dec. 19 to allow teams to prepare for the upcoming campaign.
Each NBA team will play at least two preseason games — one at home and one on the road — and none will play more than four. The preseason schedule will begin with a five-game slate on Dec. 11 — highlighted by a meeting between the defending champion Los Angeles Lakers and their co-tenants at Staples Center, the LA Clippers.
Other games of interest:
- Luka Doncic and the Dallas Mavericks facing two-time reigning MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Milwaukee Bucks on Dec. 12.
- Kevin Durant presumably suiting up for the Brooklyn Nets for the first time at Barclays Center against the Washington Wizards on Dec. 13.
- Doc Rivers coaching his first game for the Philadelphia 76ers at home against the Boston Celtics on Dec. 15.
- The Toronto Raptors playing their first game in Tampa, Florida — their temporary home to begin the 2020-21 season — against the Miami Heat on Dec. 18.
- The Nets traveling to Boston to face the Celtics on Dec. 18.
As part of Friday’s announcement, the NBA said it plans to release the first half of the league’s 72-game regular-season schedule “in the coming days.” The league had previously announced plans to present its schedule in blocks, with the first half coming out before the season and the second half being released at a later date.
The NBA came up with that plan to account for the possibility that games will inevitably need to be rescheduled due to complications from the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, and to allow for more flexibility in doing so.