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NBA releases game, broadcast schedule for 2011-12 season

By Official release
Posted Jul 19 2011 2:20PM - Updated Jul 19 2011 3:10PM

NEW YORK -- The NBA today released its complete game schedule and broadcast schedules of ABC, TNT, ESPN, NBA TV, and NBA on ESPN Radio for the 2011-12 season, in the event that the NBA is able to reach a new collective bargaining agreement with the NBPA in a timely fashion.

The league's 66th season tips off on Tuesday, Nov. 1, as part of Kia Motors NBA Tip-Off '11, with two games on TNT -- the 16th straight season the league opens with a doubleheader on TNT. In the first game, the Dallas Mavericks open up defense of their NBA title by hosting the Chicago Bulls (8 p.m. ET), who won an NBA-best 62 games last season. Before the game, TNT will televise the championship ring ceremony. The second game features two Western Conference teams with their own championship aspirations as the Oklahoma City Thunder visits the Los Angeles Lakers (10:30 p.m. ET).

This is the fourth consecutive season that Kia Motors, the Official Automotive Partner of the NBA, has been the lead partner of NBA Tip-Off. Kia Motors NBA Tip-Off '11 features a combined eight nationally televised games in the first four days on TNT and ESPN. The latter opens its 10th consecutive year of NBA coverage on Wednesday, Nov. 2, with a doubleheader, featuring the defending Eastern Conference champion Miami Heat visiting its conference rival New York Knicks (8 p.m. ET), followed by the Lakers visiting rookie coach Mark Jackson and the Golden State Warriors (10:30 p.m. ET).

NBA TV tips off its 96-game slate on Saturday, Nov. 5, when the Mavericks welcome the Thunder at 8:30 p.m. ET in a rematch of last year's Western Conference Finals. For the fourth consecutive year, NBA TV will feature Fan Night on Tuesdays throughout the season. On Fan Night, NBA fans are given the opportunity to vote for the games they want to see televised nationally on NBA TV on that particular night.

Highly anticipated television matchups throughout the regular season include:

• Both games between 2011 Finals opponents, the Heat and Mavericks, will be televised nationally. The teams will tip off ABC's coverage of NBA games when the Heat visits the Mavericks on Christmas Day (2:30 p.m. ET); the Mavericks travel to Miami on March 29, in a game seen on TNT (8 p.m. ET).

• TNT's Thanksgiving night doubleheader will begin with the Atlanta Hawks hosting intra-conference rival Philadelphia 76ers (8 p.m. ET). The second game features the New Orleans Hornets traveling to Los Angeles to take on the Clippers (10:30 p.m. ET).

• The NBA will again celebrate Martin Luther King, Jr. Day with a full schedule of games on Jan. 16, including four nationally televised contests. On ESPN, the Bulls visit the home of the Civil Rights Museum, Memphis, Tenn., to square off with the Grizzlies at 1 p.m. ET. The Atlanta Hawks host the Toronto Raptors on NBA TV (4 p.m. ET). TNT will feature an evening doubleheader beginning with the Boston Celtics playing host to the Thunder at 8 p.m. ET, followed at 10:30 p.m. ET by a match of Western Conference powerhouses as the Mavericks visit the Lakers.

• Both games between the NBA's two winningest franchises will be nationally televised as the Lakers visit the Celtics Feb. 9 (TNT, 8 p.m. ET) and Boston travels to Los Angeles March 11 (ABC, 3:30 p.m. ET).

• The league's top two scoring teams from last season go head-to-head when the Denver Nuggets host the Knicks Nov. 16, on ESPN (10:30 p.m. ET). The Nuggets paced the NBA in scoring with 108.0 ppg, while the Knicks ranked second at 107.0 ppg.

In its 28th year of NBA coverage, TNT will televise 52 regular-season games, including 44 as part of Thursday night doubleheaders and a doubleheader on Martin Luther King Jr. Day. TNT will also exclusively televise NBA All-Star 2012 festivities in Orlando Feb. 24-26, culminating with the NBA's 61st All-Star Game on Sunday, Feb. 26.

ESPN will televise 75 regular-season games, which include 32 games on Wednesdays and 31 on Fridays. ESPN telecasts are also available via ESPN3.com, with nearly all on ESPN Mobile TV. ESPN Deportes (ESPN's Spanish-language U.S. sports network) and ESPN 3D will also televise select regular-season games. The ABC national television schedule consists of 15 exclusive regular-season broadcasts and tips off with a doubleheader on Christmas Day.

The NBA on ABC and ESPN presents flexible scheduling throughout the regular season in order to provide the most compelling matchups to a national audience.

The NBA on ESPN Radio's 30-game regular-season schedule begins opening night, with Chicago at Dallas. The NBA on ESPN Radio will also broadcast all the events from NBA All-Star 2012 in Orlando.

For the eighth straight season, ABC will exclusively broadcast The Finals, which tips off in June 2012. This season, TNT is the exclusive home of the 2012 NBA Western Conference Finals and ESPN will exclusively televise the 2012 NBA Eastern Conference Finals.

Once again, NBA LEAGUE PASS will offer up to 40 out-of-market games per week. NBA LEAGUE PASS is the ultimate viewing experience for basketball fans who want to watch their favorite teams, players and matchups from outside their local markets (blackout restrictions apply). Games included in NBA LEAGUE PASS are in addition to those available on ABC, TNT, NBA TV, ESPN, ESPN2 and local networks (such as a regional sports network and/or over-the-air station). NBA LEAGUE PASS is available on DIRECTV, DISH Network, and most digital cable and telephone providers.

NBA.com offers day-by-day and team-by-team schedules as well as regular-season telecast schedules of the league's domestic broadcast partners -- ABC, ESPN, TNT, NBA TV, and the NBA on ESPN Radio.

Last season, NBA games and programming were seen in 215 countries and territories in 41 languages.

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