NBA

Open For Business: NBA Unveils 66-Game 2011-12 Schedule

The lockout games are over. Let the real games begin.

The NBA has released its complete 2011-12 regular-season schedule and broadcast schedules for ABC, ESPN, TNT, NBA TV, and NBA on ESPN Radio, contingent on the timely ratification of the new collective bargaining agreement.

The league’s 66th season will feature each team playing 66 regular-season games beginning Dec. 25. Pre-season games will begin on Dec. 16. (See full schedule here.)

Following the season tip-off on Christmas Day, with a five-game slate previously announced, Kia NBA Tip-Off ’11 includes 109 NBA games highlighted by a series of marquee doubleheaders Tuesday, Dec. 27, and Thursday, Dec. 29, on TNT, and Friday, Jan. 6, on ESPN. NBA TV will also present five doubleheaders during the period starting Monday, Dec. 26, through Wednesday, Jan. 4.

On TNT, the first doubleheader on Tuesday, Dec. 27, features the Miami Heat playing its home opener against the Boston Celtics (8 p.m. ET). The second game features the Utah Jazz traveling to L.A. to face the Lakers (10:30 p.m. ET).

The Thursday Dec 29 double-feature includes a rematch of last year’s Western Conference Finals as the Dallas Mavericks travel to Oklahoma City (8 p.m. ET) to play the Thunder, followed by the Lakers hosting the New York Knicks (10:30 p.m. ET).

After four games on Christmas Day, ESPN’s coverage continues during on Jan. 6, with a Friday doubleheader with the Chicago Bulls against the Orlando Magic (8 p.m. ET). In the second game, the Portland Trail Blazers travel to Phoenix to take on the Suns (10:30 p.m ET).

NBA TV tips off the season with a Monday night doubleheader when the Houston Rockets play at Orlando at 7 p.m. ET, followed by the Sacramento Kings hosting the Lakers at 10 p.m. ET on Dec. 26.

In its 28th year of NBA coverage, TNT will televise 45 regular-season games, including 32 as part of Thursday night doubleheaders and a doubleheader on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. TNT will also televise NBA All-Star 2012 festivities in Orlando Feb. 24-26, culminating with its exclusive presentation of the NBA’s 61st All-Star Game on Sunday, Feb. 26.

ESPN will televise 75 regular-season games, which include 23 games on Wednesdays and 25 on Fridays. The ABC national TV schedule consists of 15 exclusive regular-season broadcasts and tips off with a doubleheader on Christmas Day.

The NBA on ABC and ESPN presents flexible scheduling throughout the regular season in order to provide the most compelling match-ups to a national audience.

NBA TV will present its 96-game slate, which will include 33 doubleheaders this season. For the fourth consecutive year, NBA TV will feature Fan Night on Tuesdays throughout the season. On Fan Night, NBA fans are given the opportunity to vote for the games they want to see televised nationally on NBA TV on that particular night. Fan Night begins this season on Tuesday, Jan. 3.

The NBA on ESPN Radio’s 23-game regular-season scheduled begins opening day with Miami at Dallas on Christmas Day at 2:30 p.m. ET. The NBA on ESPN Radio will also broadcast all the events from NBA All-Star 2012 in Orlando.

For the eighth straight season, ABC will exclusively broadcast The Finals, which tips off next June. This season, TNT is the exclusive home of the 2012 NBA Western Conference Finals and ESPN will exclusively televise the 2012 NBA Eastern Conference Finals.

PHOTOS: ICON/SMI

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