NBA Announces Full Preseason Slate for 2020-21 Season

Paul KasabianSenior ContributorNovember 27, 2020

NBA Commissioner Adam Silver unveils the NBA All-Star Game Kobe Bryant MVP Award during a news conference Saturday, Feb. 15, 2020, in Chicago. (AP Photo/David Banks)
David Banks/Associated Press

The NBA released its 2020 preseason schedule Friday.

Forty-nine games are currently scheduled between Friday, Dec. 11, and Saturday, Dec. 19, although the NBA announced that is subject to change. Each of the NBA's 30 teams are slated play either two, three or four games.

Five contests open the preseason Dec. 11, starting from 7 to 10 p.m. ET.

The preseason slate is structured to reduce traveling amid the COVID-19 pandemic, with teams playing pairs of games against each other in the same location over the course of a few days.

For example, the Indiana Pacers will visit the Cleveland Cavaliers Dec. 12 before facing their division rival on the road once again two days later.

That schedule pattern permeates the slate, although it is not uniform for all 30 teams. For the most part, however, traveling has been reduced, with most teams playing division or conference rivals.

Of note, the Los Angeles Lakers and L.A. Clippers will play each other twice in their shared Staples Center home.

The NBA announced that the 2020-21 regular season will begin Dec. 22, per ESPN's Andrew Lopez. The schedule will be shortened from 82 to 72 games. That schedule has not been released, but the Association revealed the slate will be delivered in two halves.

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The first half will encompass Dec. 22 through March 4 and be released around the time training camps begin Tuesday.

The second half of the schedule will be released during the first half's duration. Waiting to schedule the second half allows the NBA to make adjustments if first-half games are canceled amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

The second half will run from March 11 through May 16, and the playoffs will start May 22. The NBA Finals will end in July.