Mark your calendars basketball fans because the NBA has released all team schedules ahead of the upcoming 2018-2019 season. Of course, everyone is looking forward to this year’s Christmas Day schedule with games including the defending champs Golden State Warriors, LeBron and the Lakers, and the Houston Rockets. Many, of course, thought the Toronto Raptors would meet the San Antonio Spurs on Christmas considering the Kawhi Leonard trade was the biggest offseason headline outside of LeBron’s move to Los Angeles. But, that first meeting between the teams will be January 3rd in San Antonio. The Spurs will open their season against the Minnesota Timberwolves in San Antonio. Opening night will be October 16 and kicking off the season will be the Philadelphia 76ers and the Boston Celtics squaring off in Boston. Thereafter it’s a showdown in Oakland between the Golden State Warriors and the Oklahoma City Thunder. Hopefully Celtics forward Gordon Hayward will not get injured in the first five minutes of the game like last season. If he stays healthy, along with point guard Kyrie Irving, and proving an already playoff caliber team without them, Boston may be the scariest team to play in the Eastern Conference. The Los Angeles Lakers may have acquired the best player of this generation, if not of all time, but are the Lakers true NBA Championship contenders with LeBron James and a troupe of young stars? Personally, I don’t believe so. Their success will not depend on how well LeBron performs with the Lakers, rather their success will depend if their incredibly young bench can carry the load. Without a doubt, many feel LeBron doesn’t feel like carrying a team anymore like he did with former teammate Kyrie Irving and especially last season without Irving’s help. With clear frustration with his ex-Cavaliers teammates’ play in the playoffs last season, he may find himself in the same predicament this year. In what looks to be the most exciting season that the NBA has seen the last few years, this year’s NBA Championship may be up for grabs for anyone to take. With an overloaded Western conference and balanced Lebron Jamesless eastern conference, Boston looks to take back the East and keep teams like Toronto and Philadelphia at bay. No matter who you root for, grab some popcorn and kick your feet up for an exciting upcoming season.
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