The 2013-2014 NBA schedule has been released. Here are my quick takeaways.
Houston faces Oklahoma City four times this year: They go to OKC on Dec. 29 and March 11. OKC comes to Houston on Jan. 16 and April 4.
– Their first two games against Golden State come on back-to-back Friday nights, Dec. 6 in Houston , then the following Friday at Oracle Arena in California. These two teams my just be starting a nice little rivalry after what went down last year with the Rockets dropping a record-tying 23 three-pointers on the Warriors, only to have Mark Jackson instruct his team to prevent the record-breaking three pointer. It led to an incident with Patrick Beverly and Draymond Green. More fireworks are sure to follow. The only other meeting will take place on Feb. 20 at Golden State.
– Dwight Howard returns to Staples Center during the first week of the season on Nov. 4, but that game is against the Clippers. Their other two trips to Staples Center will be against his former team, the Lakers, on Feb. 19 and Apr. 8. All four Lakers matchups are on national television, the first and last game on TNT, the other two on ESPN.
– Interestingly the Rockets have only one road trip longer than four games all season. That’s a five game trip out west that begins and ends in the same place. They open with a game against the Lakers, play Golden State the next night. That’s followed by a game a couple days later in Phoenix, then a day off and a back-to-back in Sacramento, then the return trip to Los Angeles.
– The annual New Year’s Eve game will bring Sacramento to town for the usual 6:00 pm tip-off.
– The Rockets have the first game of the Christmas Night doubleheader when they visit the Spurs at 7 p.m. That precedes the Warriors at Clippers. The Rockets follow a Christmas day triple-header with the Nets at Bulls, Thunder at Knicks and Heat at Lakers.
– Houston has 20 sets of back-to-back games. Oklahoma City has just 15 back-to-backs.
– Houston has 26 nationally televised games. TNT will broadcast nine Rockets games and ABC will air one contest. Also, 10 Rockets games will be broadcast on ESPN with another six to air on NBA TV.
Full schedule can be found here.
– Wex (@awexler)