EDITOR’S NOTE: Click here for an updated post on the schedule.
Between the collective power radiating from Love, James and Irving in Cleveland to the various changes in ownership experienced thus far, the NBA 2014-15 season is probably the most anticipated one basketball has seen in a decade.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. The Cavs Will Play the Heat on Christmas
Although the schedule has yet to be unveiled, sources have announced that the Cleveland Cavaliers will be facing off against the Miami Heat this December 25 at American Airlines Arena.
Not only will LeBron be facing off against his former team in Miami, but the two teams are scheduled to meet three other times this season too. According to the calendar, they will be playing each other on February 11, March 16 and April 2, 2015. The other three games will be taking place in Cleveland according to the preliminary schedules given to the teams.
Barry Watson of the Miami Herald commented:
Barring an unexpected change of heart by the NBA, Christmas in Miami will feature LeBron James‘ much-anticipated return to Miami in an opposing uniform. Though the NBA’s schedule will not be finalized and released until mid-August, an unofficial internal schedule of select gameshas Cleveland playing the Heat in Miami on Christmas on ABC, according to a person familiar with the situation.”
2. The NBA Wants a Spurs vs. Cavaliers Opener in Clevelend
The NBA is scheming to give the people what they want with a scheduled game between the NBA defending champions, the San Antonio Spurs and the Cavs in Cleveland for opening night according to Gary Washburn of The Boston Globe.
The Spurs might have a bit of an aversion considering it is rare that the champions from the previous year are rarely told to play their first game in anywhere but their home court. However, at this point it doesn’t look like any team just yet can match up against Gregg Popovich’s powerhouse and he would likely relish the opportunity to shut down the LeBron hype once again.
3. The Official Schedules Will Be Announced on Wednesday, August 13
The finalized regular-season national television schedule will be announced on Wednesday, August 13 on the NBA 2014-15 Schedule Release Special at 6 p.m. ET and posted on NBA.com.
An NBA TV special will be shown to discuss the highlights of the schedule along with an analysis by Rick Kamla and Brent Barry, along with other various NBA experts to talk about the leagues biggest match ups.
4. The Warriors-Clippers Rivalry is Back
The Clippers and Warriors are known for their vicious rivalry which will definitely stand out this year now that the Indiana-Miami rivalry has partly diminished. The Clippers’ Blake Griffin is constantly at odds with every and any player on the Warriors while Stephen Curry and Chris Paul go back and forth all game slamming the backboards while keeping the crowd wildly entertained. Many of the players on both the Warriors and Clipper are back on their respective teams and itching for a brawl.
Therefore, when the schedule is released the first teams after Miami-Cleveland you should be looking for the date to watch should be the Californian rivals.
5. Kobe Bryant and Derrick Rose Will Be Returning
Soon to be 36 years old, the legendary Kobe Bryant will be joining the Lakers once again for another season with hopefully at lest another after that. As of recently he has been compared and analyzed thoroughly with the conclusion that he is extremely similar to Michael Jordan which can be seen in the video above.
We don’t know how well this season will go for him as he is on the tail end of his career at this point, but it is always enjoyable to watch him play. Bryant is the clear best player on the team before Jeremy Lin which doesn’t help him out much, but he can either tear it up or go down in the slumps with the Lakers.
Lucky for the Chicago Bulls, point guard Derrick Rose isn’t at Kobe’s ripe age but should be at his prime at the young age of 26. USA coach Mike Kryzewski told ESPN that Rose is back in prime condition after his ACL injury in 2012.
Krzyzewski said in regards to Rose’s recovery after so much time off the court:
It takes an exceptional person, which is why we’re talking about Derrick. I think he’s exceptional in every way. He went right at it. The first defensive exchange in the camp, he was all over the ball handler, moving his feet, attacking him. There was a buzz right away because it was basically his saying, ‘Look, I’m not just back. I’m back at a level that’s elite.'”
The Bulls schedule should be an interesting one with Rose back at it.