Twenty Pelicans Games to Watch in 2013-14

20 Games to Watch in 2013

August 6, 2013

Since the outset of the 2013 calendar year, the New Orleans Pelicans have unveiled a new name, new logos and new uniforms. But none of these things will be recorded in “official” NBA history until Oct. 30, when the Pelicans tip off the 2013-14 regular season at home against the Indiana Pacers. On the eve of Halloween, New Orleans will begin its 82-game schedule and the outset of a new era for professional basketball in the Crescent City.

In conjunction with Tuesday’s official release of the 2013-14 NBA schedule, it’s time for Pelicans fans to get out their calendars and start jotting down a few important dates. While Pelicans.com recommends watching all 82 of the team’s games during this upcoming season, the following is a list of 20 games that are “can’t miss” in 2013-14:

Wednesday, Oct. 30 vs. Indiana
In the first-ever Pelicans regular season game, New Orleans officially debuts its new uniforms, redesigned home floor and the renovated New Orleans Arena, against the Eastern Conference’s runner-up from 2012-13.

Saturday, Nov. 2 vs. Charlotte
The top two overall picks from the 2012 NBA Draft, University of Kentucky teammates Anthony Davis and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, meet in the Big Easy. Davis went 2-0 vs. Kidd-Gilchrist as a rookie.

Friday, Nov. 8 vs. L.A. Lakers
It’s the only visit of 2013-14 to New Orleans by the Lakers, who are always a big road draw.

Saturday, Nov. 16 vs. Philadelphia
All-Star Pelicans point guard Jrue Holiday faces his former 76ers teammates for the first time.

Friday, Nov. 22 vs. Cleveland
Each of the last three No. 1 overall picks will be on the floor, including Anthony Davis and Cleveland’s Kyrie Irving and Anthony Bennett.

Saturday, Dec. 21 at Portland
Last season’s Rookie of the Year winner, Damian Lillard, meets the ROY runner-up, Anthony Davis, in the first of four Pelicans-Blazers encounters.

Monday, Dec. 23 at Sacramento
In the final New Orleans game before Christmas, Tyreke Evans gets his first opportunity to play against his old team, the Kings.

Saturday, Dec. 28 at Houston
The Pelicans get their initial up-close look at the revamped Rockets, featuring free-agent addition Dwight Howard.

Wednesday, Jan. 1 at Minnesota
New Orleans opens the 2014 calendar year at Target Center against the Timberwolves.

Tuesday, Jan. 7 at Miami
The Pelicans’ first matchup of 2013-14 against the defending two-time NBA champions.

Monday, Jan. 13 vs. San Antonio
The defending Western Conference champion Spurs make their first visit of 2013-14 to New Orleans.

Saturday, Feb. 1 vs. Chicago
Former league MVP Derrick Rose plays his first game in New Orleans in nearly two years (the Bulls won in NOLA on Feb. 8, 2012).

Friday, Feb. 7 vs. Minnesota
In their 49th game of the regular season, the Pelicans make their first appearance on national television (not counting their three NBA TV games), during an ESPN broadcast against the Timberwolves.

Sunday, Feb. 9 at Brooklyn
In the first stop of a three-game Pelicans road trip prior to the All-Star Game in New Orleans, they meet the star-laden Nets for the first time in 2013-14.

Wednesday, Feb. 19 vs. New York
The Pelicans open the post-All-Star-break portion of the schedule against Carmelo Anthony and the Atlantic Division champion Knicks.

Monday, Feb. 24 vs. L.A. Clippers
Chris Paul, Blake Griffin and the Clippers make the first of their two visits to New Orleans.

Wednesday, Feb. 26 at Dallas
New Orleans makes its second ESPN appearance during a road game against the Southwest Division rival Mavericks.

Friday, Feb. 28 at Phoenix
The Pelicans receive national exposure for a second straight road game, facing the Suns on ESPN’s airwaves.

Saturday, March 22 vs. Miami
The only visit of 2013-14 to New Orleans by the Heat’s “Big Three” of LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh.

Wednesday, April 16 vs. Houston
For the first time since 2004-05, New Orleans closes the regular season on its home floor. The season finale for NOLA has been in the state of Texas every year since 2008.