Karl-Anthony Towns has seen seven family members die from COVID-19, including his mother — ProBasketballTalk | NBC Sports

“It’s going to be hard to play. It’s going to be difficult to say this is therapy, I don’t think it will ever be therapy again for me.”

Karl-Anthony Towns has seen seven family members die from COVID-19, including his mother — ProBasketballTalk | NBC Sports

Jeff Teague believes he’s in a rare situation with Celtics — Boston Herald

Jeff Teague was the starting point guard on a 60-win Atlanta Hawks team in 2014-15 that, after getting swept in four games by Cleveland in the conference semifinals, was slowly dismantled over the next three seasons. Teague spent his first seven seasons with the Hawks, and has since bounced from Indiana, to Minnesota and, halfway…

Jeff Teague believes he’s in a rare situation with Celtics — Boston Herald

Kyrie Irving Skips Nets’ Media Obligation, Issues Vague Statement Instead — NESN.com

Sign In Kyrie Irving addressed the media Friday, just not in person. The Nets star issued a statement Friday via a spokesperson as Brooklyn’s training camp starts up. Irving only played a portion of the 2019-20 season thanks to a shoulder injury, but is expected to play with star forward Kevin Durant for the first…

Kyrie Irving Skips Nets’ Media Obligation, Issues Vague Statement Instead — NESN.com

Denver Nuggets release schedule for first half of 2020-21 season — The Denver Post

The Denver Nuggets short offseason has ended and the team is back in action at Ball Arena. On Friday, the team announced the first half schedule for the 2020-21 NBA season.

Denver Nuggets release schedule for first half of 2020-21 season — The Denver Post

Lakers lead NBA in national TV games, four-way tie for second — ProBasketballTalk | NBC Sports

The Lakers are the defending NBA champions. They have LeBron James and Anthony Davis. They play in Los Angeles.

Lakers lead NBA in national TV games, four-way tie for second — ProBasketballTalk | NBC Sports

COVID & Sports: Warriors Release 1st Half Schedule Of Shortened 2020-21 Season — CBS San Francisco

The Golden State Warriors will begin the season with four straight road games, with a home opener set for New Year’s Day, according to the first-half NBA season schedule released Friday.

COVID & Sports: Warriors Release 1st Half Schedule Of Shortened 2020-21 Season — CBS San Francisco

Simmons all in on Philly’s new theme: ‘Accountability’ — The Iola Register

“We weren’t in a position to go into the bubble and win,” Simmons said. “I think our mindset was off. Accountability is a huge part of winning. I think he’s definitely right.” PHILADELPHIA (AP) — The idea of Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid as a modern-day odd couple bunking together in a Center City condominium […]

Simmons all in on Philly’s new theme: ‘Accountability’ — The Iola Register

Grizzlies to tip off the NBA season at FedExForum against the Spurs on December 23rd — WREG.com

MEMPHIS — The Memphis Grizzlies will tip off the new NBA season in less than three weeks at home at FedExForum, with two national television games in the first half of the season. The NBA unveiling part one of the schedule on Friday showing the Grizzlies season and home openers coming against the Spurs on […]

Grizzlies to tip off the NBA season at FedExForum against the Spurs on December 23rd — WREG.com

RAPTORS SCHEDULE NOTES

RAPTORS ANNOUNCE 2020-21 FIRST HALF SCHEDULE

The Toronto Raptors announced their 2020-21 first half schedule on Friday. The Raptors will tip off their 26th season in the National Basketball Association on Wednesday, Dec. 23 when they host New Orleans at Amalie Arena in Tampa, Florida. Amalie Arena will be the team’s home for at least the first half of their schedule. This marks the 11th time in the past 12 seasons – and the 20th time in team history – the Raptors have started the regular season at home. Toronto’s road debut is set for Friday, Dec. 26 when they visit San Antonio.

The longest homestand of the first half schedule is five games from Jan. 14-22, while the longest road trip is six games which occurs Feb. 2-12. The Raptors will have five back-to-back sets, with four of those being a road games followed by another road game.

The first half schedule features seven U.S. national television appearances. Toronto has three games on NBATV and two games apiece on ESPN and TNT. The Raptors local television schedule will be released at a later date.

This season marks Toronto’s 17th in the Atlantic Division, joining Boston, Brooklyn, New York and Philadelphia. The Raptors were a member of the Central Division from 1995-2004.

For the first half schedule, all weekday home games will start at 7:30 p.m. Weekend home games will tip at either 6 p.m. or 7:30 p.m.

Each team will play 72 games in the 2020-21 season, facing each opponent in its conference three times (42 total games per team) and each opponent in the other conference twice (30 total games per team).  In the First Half, each team will play 37 or 38 games, including a minimum of 17 home games and a maximum of 20.  Nearly 52% of all regular-season games (558 of 1,080) have been scheduled for the First Half. 

The schedule incorporates steps to reduce travel, including the use of a “series” model.  In some instances where a team is scheduled to play twice in one market, those games have been scheduled to be played consecutively.  Each team will play an average of four “series” in the First Half – two at home and two on the road.  Additional steps include more instances of teams playing consecutive road games against teams that are geographically close, and roughly 50% fewer instances of teams making single-game road trips.

RAPTORS 2020-21 FIRST HALF SCHEDULE NOTES

Atlantic Division

Boston (H: 1/4, A: 2/12, 3/4); Brooklyn (A: 2/5); New York (H: 12/31); Philadelphia (H: 2/21, 2/23, A: 12/29); Total (H: 4, A: 4)

Central Division

Chicago (H: 2/28); Detroit (H: 3/2); Indiana (A: 1/24, 1/25); Milwaukee (H: 1/27, A: 2/16, 2/18); Total (H: 3, A: 4)

Southeast Division

Atlanta (A: 2/6); Charlotte (H: 1/14, 1/16); Miami (H: 1/20, 1/22, A: 2/24); Orlando (H: 1/31, A: 2/2); Washington (A: 2/10); Total (H: 5, A: 4)

Northwest Division

Minnesota (H: 2/14, A: 2/19); Portland (A: 1/11); Total (H: 1, A: 2)

Pacific Division

Golden State (A: 1/10); Phoenix (A: 1/6); Sacramento (H: 1/29, A: 1/8); Total (H: 1, A: 3)

Southwest Division

Dallas (H: 1/18); Houston (H: 2/26); Memphis (A: 2/8); New Orleans (H: 12/23, A: 1/2); San Antonio: (A: 12/26); Total (H: 3, A: 3)

Games by Month
December:4 (2 home, 2 road)January:                       16 (9 home, 7 road)
February:                  15 (5 home, 10 road)March:                      2 (1 home, 1 road)
Games by Day
Sunday:6 (4 home, 2 road)Monday:                  5 (2 home, 3 road)
Tuesday:5 (2 home, 3 road)Wednesday:                           6 (3 home, 3 road)
Thursday:4 (2 home, 2 road)Friday:                           7 (3 home, 4 road)
Saturday:4 (1 home, 3 road)  

Longest Homestand
5 games:    1/14 vs. Charlotte, 1/16 vs. Charlotte, 1/18 vs. Dallas, 1/20 vs. Miami, 1/22 vs. Miami.

Longest Road Trip
6 games:    2/2 at Orlando, 2/5 at Brooklyn, 2/6 at Atlanta, 2/8 at Memphis, 2/10 at Washington, 2/12 at Boston.
Back-to-Back-Games
Overall: 5
Home game, followed by home games: 0Home game, followed by road game: 1
Road game, followed by home game: 0Road game, followed by road game: 4

-RAPTORS-

NBA suspends marijuana testing for 2020-21 season — East Bay Times

Field Level Media The NBA will not randomly test players for marijuana during the 2020-21 season. “Due to the unusual circumstances in conjunction with the pandemic, we have agreed with the NBPA to suspend random testing for marijuana for the 2020-21 season and focus our random testing program on performance-enhancing products and drugs of abuse,”…

NBA suspends marijuana testing for 2020-21 season — East Bay Times