2012-13 Mavs' schedule tidbits
Earl K. Sneed breaks down all of the need-to-know details and important dates on the 2012-13 Dallas Mavericks' schedule before the organization begins its 33rd year of operation.
2012-13 Mavs' schedule tidbits
After a bevy of off-season moves and a near-complete roster turnover, the 2012-13 Dallas Mavericks now know when they’ll play a meaningful game once the regular season tips off.
The new-look roster will immediately be tested, beginning the season Opening Night in Los Angeles on Oct. 30 against Kobe Bryant, Steve Nash and the Lakers before a back-to-back in Utah the next night against the Jazz. The team will then go on to be showcased on national TV a total of 23 times, with eight games on TNT, seven on ESPN, seven on NBA TV and one lone appearance -- a Feb. 24 home showdown versus the same Lakers -- on ABC.
But after the early-season road trip, the Mavs will return to Big D looking to begin their 33rd season of operation with a victory in the home opener against the Charlotte Bobcats on Nov. 3. And that will be just the start of a revolving door of old faces in new places that will enter the American Airlines Center, as the recently-amnestied and then claimed Brendan Haywood anchors the Charlotte frontline in his return to Dallas.
Although Haywood’s return may fly under the radar, the trips of ex-Mavs Jason Kidd and Jason Terry to the visitors’ locker room will not.
After shunning the Mavs at the last minute in free agency, Kidd will return as a member of the New York Knicks on Nov. 21. Terry, however, will have to wait his turn, as one of the key components to the Mavs’ trips to the NBA Finals in 2006 and 2011 returns to his former home as a Boston Celtic on March 22.
The Mavs welcome in the NBA champion Miami Heat on Dec. 20. Meanwhile, the Oklahoma City Thunder, the team that ended the Mavericks’ season with a first-round playoff sweep, travel south on Interstate 35 on Jan. 18 and March 17.
Before their trip in February, the Lakers will invade Dallas on Nov. 24. Fellow Western Conference power San Antonio will also come to the AA Center twice on Dec. 30 and Jan. 25 as the Southwest Division rivalry is renewed.
But the most-anticipated visiting trip may not come from a team or even from any of the former Mavericks, as The Colony native and Dallas’ top free-agent pursuit Deron Williams and the Brooklyn Nets come to town on March 20.
In addition to matchups against Terry and Williams, the Mavs will have a busy month of March, welcoming in Lamar Odom and the Clippers on March 26 for the first time since the 2011 Sixth Man of the Year was sent home after a mutual parting of ways with the Dallas front office in his lone season.
All told, the Mavericks will play a season-high 16 games during March, with six of their first seven coming on the road.
After the jam-packed schedule in the 66-game shortened season following the lockout, things should settle down this year. The Mavs will play a total of 16 back-to-backs in the 82-game full season, with 10 coming on the road and three beginning at home and concluding away.
The Mavs will also reap the benefit of a home-heavy November, playing eight of their 14 games in their own backyard. That should only help 11-time All-Star Dirk Nowitzki get used to his new supporting cast, while the Dallas fans also get accustom to the new names on the back of the white jerseys.
And as our resident stat guru Bryan Gutierrez (via @EdKupfer) discovered patrolling the Twitterverse, the Mavs will also have plenty of time to build chemistry on the fly during their off days.