NBA action is less than two months away.
The league released its 2019-2020 schedule earlier this week, and whether you are a casual fan or diehard, 82 regular season games can be difficult to keep track of between October and April. It’s a long season. Here are a few dates to remember as the Charlotte Hornets prepare for the season.
(1) Preseason opener
Someone has a sick sense of humor sending the Hornets to Boston for the preseason opener on Oct. 6. Why is that? Remember Charlotte’s three-time All-Star, point guard Kemba Walker? He signed with the Celtics in free agency after the Hornets didn’t come up with the cash to offer him the super-max deal he became eligible for after being named All-NBA. He heads to Charlotte in green on Nov. 7 during the regular season. Will Buzz City boo him or applaud his return?
(2) Preseason dates at Spectrum Center
- Charlotte hosts Miami on Oct. 9.
- Charlotte hosts Detroit on Oct. 16.
(3) Regular season
- Save the date—Oct. 23. The Hornets open at Spectrum Center against Chicago.
- Charlotte hosts Orlando and former head coach Steve Clifford on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Jan. 20 at 5 p.m.
- For Steph Curry fanatics: Golden State will be here on Dec. 4.
- For LeBron James fans: the Lakers head to Charlotte on March 21.
- James Harden and Russell Westbrook, together again: March 7.
- For Kawhi Leonard fans: the Clippers play here on March 28.
(4) Happy New Year
Charlotte hosts Boston at 3 p.m. on New Year’s Eve.
(5) Get out of town
The Hornets will play a home game in Paris on Jan. 24 against Milwaukee at AccorHotels Arena. They also host Milwaukee and reigning NBA MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo on March 1, just in case you can’t make it to France.
Here’s your 2019-2020 Hornets’ CliffsNotes:
(1) New kids
Charlotte drafted P.J. Washington, a sophomore forward from Kentucky, 12th overall, Cody Martin — senior forward from Nevada, in the second round, 36th overall, as well as San Diego State sophomore Jalen McDaniels 52nd overall. Charlotte signed Martin’s twin, Caleb Martin as a free agent last month.
(2) Life after Kemba
Charlotte went 39-43 last season, taking their playoff push down to the final game. They have not been to the playoffs since 2015-2016, when Miami knocked them out in the first round. Head coach James Borrego relied heavily on Walker and a mixture of rookies and relatively inexperienced players late last season in his first year at the helm. They dubbed themselves “Kemba and the Avengers.” Let’s see what that group looks like with former Celtic, whom Charlotte acquired in free agency, Terry Rozier playing more of a leading role.