2018-19 NBA schedule released

The NBA has already released the schedule for the upcoming 2018-19 season. Here are a few notable nights.

With the release of the NBA schedule, we see some familiar trends. Holidays like Christmas, Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Thanksgiving(ish), and of course the first opening days are loaded with interesting matchups.

The season will kick-off October 16 with the 76ers traveling to Boston to take on the Celtics. This was a big rivalry many years ago, but with LeBron James now in the Western Conference (his first game as a Laker is Oct. 18), each team can now see themselves on a trajectory that could land them in the NBA Finals. The game will be on TNT.

As usual, Christmas Day is a great one for basketball fans that have the opportunity to put their feet up and get get away from the hustle and bustle. LeBron vs. the Warriors is a classic, but we will see him try to topple Steph, KD, and the gang as a Laker this time. The other top Christmas Day game will likely be Thunder at Rockets. Aside from just being a fun game to watch, it will be interesting to see OKC face Carmelo Anthony and determine if they are in the running in the West.

Most basketball fans have heard a thing or two about the Kawhi Leonard/DeMar DeRozan trade. Assuming Kawhi does not find a way to leave or not play for the Raptors, we will see him face off against the Spurs for the first time February 22nd.

A lot of familiar faces are in new places this season. The nights that feature former teammates and organizations are often some of the most exciting. LeBron vs. Kyrie is now a classic Lakers vs. Celtics match that will make for fantastic television. Those two will meet February 7 and you can bet it will hold down a prime TV spot. James' return to Cleveland will be November 21 - the crowd reaction will be very interesting.

A couple of other notable stars returning to their old teams for the first time will be Gordon Hayward of the Celtics returning to Utah November 9th and Blake Griffin of the Pistons returning to L.A. January 12th.

Thunder fans will likely have March 16 circled on their calendars, as the showdown with Kevin Durant is always juicy drama.

With all of the fancinating rookies from Luka Doncic to Alize Johnson, familiar faces in new places, and plenty of rivalries, it will be a very entertaining season. Heck, maybe the Warriors won't even win it all. Oh wait, they added DeMarcus Cousins. Well, we'll see.

Each of the 30 teams will play a 82 game season, so there are of course too many games to show here. A link to the full NBA schedule can be found here: http://stats.nba.com/schedule/#!?PD=N&Month=0