The 2013-14 NBA season tips off shortly, and the opening week of the campaign promises to be nothing short of thrilling.
There are a number of high-profile matchups and must-see showdowns that will feature the league’s most popular teams and brightest stars.
Let’s take a look at the complete schedule—including television info and predictions on the winner of each matchup. Plus, be sure to check out the handful of highlighted contests you can’t afford to miss as an NBA fan.
|Matchup||Time (ET)||Away TV||Home TV||Nat. TV||Prediction|
|Tuesday, Oct. 29|
|Orlando at Indiana||7:00 PM||FSFL||FSMW||IND|
|Chicago at Miami||8:00 PM||TNT||MIA|
|LA Clippers at LA Lakers||10:30 PM||TNT||LAC|
|Wednesday, Oct. 30|
|Milwaukee at New York||7:30 PM||FSWI||MSG||NYK|
|Brooklyn at Cleveland||7:00 PM||FSOH||NBATV||BRK|
|Miami at Philadelphia||7:00 PM||SUN||CSN||MIA|
|Boston at Toronto||7:00 PM||CSNN||BOS|
|Washington at Detroit||7:30 PM||CSNB||FSDT||WAS|
|Charlotte at Houston||8:00 PM||TSOH||CSN Houston||HOU|
|Orlando at Minnesota||8:00 PM||FSFL||FSN||MIN|
|Indiana at New Orleans||8:00 PM||FSMW||FSN||NOP|
|Atlanta at Dallas||8:30 PM||FSS||FSSW||DAL|
|Memphis at San Antonio||8:30 PM||TSOH||KENS||MEM|
|Oklahoma City at Utah||9:00 PM||FSOK||FSRM||OKC|
|Portland at Phoenix||10:00 PM||KGW||FSAZ||POR|
|Denver at Sacramento||10:00 PM||ALT||KXTV||SAC|
|LA Lakers at Golden State||10:30 PM||TWC SN||CSNB||NBATV||GSW|
|Thursday, Oct. 31|
|New York at Chicago||8:00 PM||TNT||CHI|
|Golden State at LA Clippers||10:30 PM||TNT||LAC|
|Friday, Nov. 1|
|Cleveland at Charlotte||7:00 PM||FSOH||TSOH||CLE|
|New Orleans at Orlando||7:00 PM||FSN||FSFL||ORL|
|Philadelphia at Washington||7:00 PM||CN8PHI||CSNB||WAS|
|Toronto at Atlanta||7:30 PM||FSS||ATL|
|Milwaukee at Boston||7:30 PM||FSWI||CSNN||BOS|
|Dallas at Houston||8:00 PM||FSSW||CSN Houston||HOU|
|Detroit at Memphis||8:00 PM||FSDT||TSOH||DET|
|Oklahoma City at Minnesota||8:00 PM||FSOK||FSN||OKC|
|Miami at Brooklyn||8:00 PM||SUN||ESPN||MIA|
|Portland at Denver||9:00 PM||CSNN||ALT||DEN|
|Utah at Phoenix||10:00 PM||FSRM||FSAZ||PHX|
|LA Clippers at Sacramento||10:00 PM||FSW2||CSAC||LAC|
|San Antonio at LA Lakers||10:30 PM||KENS||TWC SN||ESPN||SAS|
|Saturday, Nov. 2|
|Cleveland at Indiana||7:00 PM||FSOH||FSMW||IND|
|Chicago at Philadelphia||7:30 PM||WGN||CSN||NBATV||CHI|
|Charlotte at New Orleans||8:00 PM||TSOH||FSN||NOP|
|Memphis at Dallas||8:30 PM||TSOH||FSSW||MEM|
|Toronto at Milwaukee||8:30 PM||FSWI||TOR|
|Houston at Utah||9:00 PM||CSN Houston||FSRM||HOU|
|San Antonio at Portland||10:00 PM||FSSW||KGW||SAS|
|Sacramento at Golden State||10:30 PM||CSAC||CSNB||SAC|
|Sunday, Nov. 3|
|Minnesota at New York||7:30 PM||FSN+||MSG||NYK|
|Boston at Detroit||6:00 PM||CSNN||FSDT||BOS|
|Washington at Miami||6:00 PM||CSNB||SUN||MIA|
|Brooklyn at Orlando||6:00 PM||WCBS||FSFL||ORL|
|Phoenix at Oklahoma City||7:00 PM||FSAZ||FSOK||NBATV||OKC|
|Atlanta at LA Lakers||9:30 PM||FSS||TWC SN||LAL|
|Monday, Nov. 4|
|Minnesota at Cleveland||7:00 PM||FSN||FSOH||CLE|
|Golden State at Philadelphia||7:00 PM||CSNB||CSN||GSW|
|Boston at Memphis||8:00 PM||CSNN||TSOH||MEM|
|Houston at LA Clippers||10:30 PM||CSN Houston||FSW2||NBATV||LAC|
Chicago Bulls at Miami Heat
This battle between Eastern Conference powerhouses will feature Derrick Rose’s regular-season return on national television against the back-to-back defending champion Heat.
D-Rose is expected to carry the Bulls to great heights in 2013-14 and should provide the toughest challenge to Miami’s chances at a three-peat. It’s not going to be easy, as LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh are back, along with a re-tooled supporting cast down in South Beach.
This is the first of four scheduled matchups between the two juggernauts, and each will be critical to the playoff seedings and conference standings.
While the early season is usually a time to shake off the rust and ease back into the grind, this game is going to have a postseason-like atmosphere and could be one of the best contests of the year.
Miami does hold home-court advantage and Rose hasn’t played a regular-season contest since the spring of 2012, giving the Heat a minor edge in this one. That should be the difference, but the final score will certainly be close.
Brooklyn Nets at Cleveland Cavaliers
Perhaps no other teams in the entire NBA did more during the offseason to increase their playoff and title chances than the Nets and Cavaliers.
Brooklyn pulled off a megatrade to acquire proven veterans and former champions in Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett and Jason Terry. The move greatly bolstered the starting lineup, and these new pieces promise to bring a defensive presence that the Nets were lacking in 2012-13.
Cleveland decided to make the leap from rebuilding squad to playoff contender by dumping Byron Scott and rehiring former coach Mike Brown, selecting Anthony Bennett with the top pick in the draft, signing a former All-Star center in Andrew Bynum and adding a veteran bench presence in Jarrett Jack, plus a number of other minor moves that should help them get through the regular season with a top-eight record in the East.
Which team will win this one?
We’ll get a chance to see these two vastly improved squads go head-to-head on Wednesday evening, and it should definitely be worth watching.
Expect the Nets to have an edge, as their aging veterans are well-rested and ready to make a run. The Cavs will need some time to find a rapport, especially with so many new pieces surrounding a young foundation. However, anything could happen in the NBA, so tune in.
Golden State Warriors at Los Angeles Clippers
The Dubs and Clips clash in a contest between two teams with dreams of capturing the Western Conference crown and competing in the NBA Finals at the conclusion of this season.
Both improved steadily over the summer, with L.A. finally nabbing a great coach by trading for Doc Rivers. The brass added perimeter shooting and defense to surround a core that features Chris Paul and Blake Griffin.
Golden State lost some key bench contributors in Jarrett Jack and Carl Landry, but brought in the versatile Andre Iguodala to help fill a number of holes on the roster.
Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson will still shoulder the scoring load, but Iguodala could be a decent third option while also guarding the opposition’s top scorer, helping to facilitate the offense and banging for boards on both sides of the court.
This matchup will be our first real glimpse into how these personnel adjustments will impact both teams in 2013-14. It should be an exciting showdown, but the Clippers get the edge. Their defense should be enough to quell the Dubs’ offensive output and allow for a narrow victory.