The 76ers, along with the rest of the NBA, released their schedule for the 2014-2015 season tonight. The team opens the campaign on Wednesday, 10/29/2014 with a road match-up against the Indiana Pacers, and will attempt to improve upon a 19-63 finish in its second year under head coach Brett Brown.
Below, find a link to the full list of dates for the Sixers’ 52nd season. Plus, check out some additional notes on a few of the schedule’s home highlights.
2014-2015 76ers Schedule:
You’re probably looking to find this date first:
- Monday, 1/5/2015 vs. Cleveland Cavaliers (7:00 PM)
This part is obligatory. LeBron James’ new old team will make two stops at Wells Fargo Center this season. How the Cavaliers fare with their hometown product will be the focal point of this NBA season.
Top NBA title contenders:
- Mon, 12/1/2014 vs. San Antonio Spurs (7:00 PM)
After a remarkably dominant run to a fifth NBA championship under head coach Gregg Popovich, the Spurs and their steady veteran core will try to win a second straight title. It will be worth watching to what extent Kawhi Leonard can build off his MVP showing in the Finals.
- Friday, 12/5/2014 vs. Oklahoma City Thunder (7:00 PM)
This season is a big one for the Thunder, which have failed to get back to the NBA Finals since their 2012 appearance. Other teams (ehem, Toronto) have already started getting fined for tampering with reigning MVP Kevin Durant, whose impending free agency is becoming more and more of a story.
- Friday, 3/27/2015 vs. Los Angeles Clippers (7:00 PM)
With a new owner in place, and Doc Rivers presumably locked up as head coach for the long term, Los Angeles – with its young nucleus continuing to grow – is coming off a second straight season in which it set a franchise record for wins. Could 2015 be the year the Clippers take the next step towards taking control of the Western Conference?
- Friday, 11/7/2014 vs. Chicago Bulls (7:00 PM)
LeBron James’ decision to break up the Miami Heat’s Big 3 certainly will shift the balance of power around in the Eastern Conference. The Cavaliers will probably be the favorites, especially if they obtain forward Kevin Love; however, the Bulls – with a healthy Derrick Rose, the addition of forward Pau Gasol, and their trademark resiliency – could definitely be a factor in the East.
A few under-the-radar teams worth checking out:
- Friday, 12/19/2014 (7:00 PM); Saturday, 2/7/2015 (7:30 PM) vs. Charlotte Hornets
The franchise closed out its run as the ‘Bobcats’ in style, as first-year head coach Steve Clifford lead Charlotte to a 22-win improvement, and a playoff appearance for just the second time during the 10-year ‘Bobcats’ era. The Hornets sent a message this off-season, signing Lance Stephenson via free agency. That deal came on the heels of an aggressive but failed bid to pry Gordon Hayward away from Utah.
- Saturday, 11/29/2014 vs. Dallas Mavericks (7:00 PM)
The Mavericks – one year after missing the post-season – showed a lot of grit last year. They fought their way into the playoffs by securing the Western Conference’s final seed, and then took the Spurs to seven games in an opening round series. Dirk Nowitzki took less money this off-season so that the Mavs could spend more; they inked Chandler Parsons, and also were able to get Tyson Chandler and Jameer Nelson.
- Friday, 2/27/2015 (7:00 PM); Wednesday, 4/8/2015 (7:00 PM) vs. Washington Wizards
The Wizards finished the season strong, and emphatically ended a four-year playoff drought by eliminating the Bulls in the first round. They then managed to hang around in their Eastern Conference Semi-Final match-up with the Pacers. This off-season, the Wizards added championship and All-Star depth by signing Paul Pierce.
Also of interest:
- Wednesday, 11/19/2014 (7:00 PM); Monday, 12/15/2014 (7:00 PM) vs. Boston Celtics
You’ll have two regular season chances to see Evan Turner with his new team; Indiana, where the Sixers sent the second overall selection of the 2010 draft this past February, opted not to pick up an $8.7 million qualifying offer for Turner.
- Wednesday, 1/7/2015 vs. Milwaukee Bucks (7:00 PM)
Milwaukee was the only NBA team with a poorer record – at 15-67 - than the Sixers last season, but it also managed to win the lottery spot ahead of the Sixers in the NBA Draft. The Bucks used that pick to select Duke’s Jabari Parker, perhaps the most NBA-ready prospect available. Also of note, Jason Kidd has taken over as head coach.
- Friday, 1/16/2015 vs. New Orleans Hornets (7:00 PM)
The Pelicans – on paper – have an intriguing core, with Anthony Davis, Tyreke Evans, Eric Gordon, and Jrue Holiday. Veteran big man Omer Asik has been added to the mix. Good health will be vital for this group, and could give them an outside shot of contending for a Western Conference playoff spot.
- Wednesday, 1/21/2015 (7:00 PM); Friday, 3/20/2015 (7:00 PM) vs. New York Knicks
Can the front office / head coach combination of Phil Jackson and Derek Fisher help revive the Knicks? They managed to keep Carmelo Anthony around by giving him a $124 million contract. Perhaps Anthony’s slimmed-down frame is a sign of him buying in…
Facts and figures:
- Longest homestand
The Sixers will play five straight games at Wells Fargo Center from Friday, 3/6/2015 through Saturday, 3/11/2015.
- Longest road trip
The Sixers’ annual lengthy holiday road trip will be seven games in length, and last from Sunday, 12/21/2014 @ Orlando through Saturday, 1/3/2014 @ Los Angeles Clippers.
- NBA All-Star Weekend
The Sixers – due to the NBA’s tinkering with the length of the annual All-Star Game break – will have off from Tuesday, 2/10/2015 through Thursday, 2/19/2015, a total of 10 days.
The Sixers will play 21 sets of games that fall on consecutive days; one of the toughest ones seems like it could be an early season back-to-back Thursday, 11/13/2014 @ Dallas, followed by Friday, 11/14/2014 @ Houston.