The 2020-21 NBA season will tip off with a doubleheader on Dec. 22, featuring the Brooklyn Nets & Golden State Warriors in the first game and the champion Los Angeles Lakers and crosstown rival Los Angeles Clippers continuing their rivalry to close out opening night,per The Athletic's Shams Charania.
The league is planning on releasing the schedule in portions, to allow for flexibility for make-up games if needed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. While the league finished the 2019-20 season safely inside a bubble environment down in Orlando, the NBA is opting to compete the upcoming season in each team's home market.
While the turnaround between the ending of last season and the start date for this new one is the quickest in league history, the NBA wanted to get back on its traditional schedule as much as possible going forward, and wanted to wrap up the season before the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo in the summer. In order to do that, the league reduced the number of regular-season games from 82 to 72, and postponed All-Star Weekend in Indianapolis to 2024.
In addition to the opening night of games, theChristmas Day games for the upcoming season have also been released, with the Lakers andMavericksheadlining a slate of five games.
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