Pelicans-Knicks opens Las Vegas play July 12
By: Jim Eichenhofer, Pelicans.com, @Jim_Eichenhofer
New Orleans Pelicans fans hoping to get a glimpse of the team’s first-round draft pick and its other promising young players in Las Vegas won’t have to wait long to do so. The NBA announced this afternoon that the first matchup of the entire 61-game NBA Summer League schedule will pit the Pelicans against the New York Knicks on Friday, July 12.
Tip-off of the league’s opener will be in Cox Pavilion at 3 p.m. Central time (1 p.m. Pacific in Las Vegas). Although the NBA will announce an official broadcast schedule soon, in general, all of the first-day games in Cox Pavilion have been televised nationally by NBA TV. As part of the brand-new format for NBA Summer League in 2013, there will be a “tournament” that takes place after each team has played three games.
The tourney will use a single-elimination format, but all clubs are guaranteed to play at least a total of five games. In past years, teams were scheduled to play exactly five times.
Here are the Pelicans’ three scheduled games in the pool-play portion of NBA Summer League (July 12-16):
• Friday, July 12, vs. New York Knicks (3 p.m. Central, 1 p.m. Pacific in Las Vegas)
• Sunday, July 14, vs. Milwaukee Bucks (7:30 p.m. Central, 5:30 p.m. Pacific in Las Vegas)
• Monday, July 15, vs. Cleveland Cavaliers (5 p.m. Central, 3 p.m. Pacific in Las Vegas)
Incidentally, the Cavaliers hold the No. 1 selection in the June 27 NBA draft, meaning the top pick potentially could be playing against the Pelicans on July 15.
Following pool play, the 22 teams will be seeded from No. 1 through No. 22, setting the stage for first- and second-round tournament games that will be contested on Wednesday, July 17 and Thursday, July 18. The loser’s bracket will be held on Friday, July 19, meaning every team’s stay in Nevada will last at least until that date.
The final eight surviving teams will face off in the quarterfinals on Saturday, July 20, prior to the semifinals and championship game on July 21-22. Like every NBA team, the Pelicans will not be able to finalize their summer league roster until after next week’s draft on June 27. Austin Rivers and Darius Miller are among the Pelicans’ veterans who are expected to participate.