The NBA has released the schedule and here are some highlights of the Denver Nuggets 2010-11 schedule:
- They open at home versus the Utah Jazz on October 27.
- The Nuggets only have 19 back to backs which I think is the lowest number they have had over the past couple of seasons and should be about average.
- As was the case last season they have a bunch of back to back games in the first couple of weeks. Four back to backs in the first three weeks to be exact, including a four game in five night stretch that sees them play the Clippers at home, head to Dallas, on to Chicago and then they finish in Indiana.
- Denver has three sets of four games in five nights including the one mentioned above. The toughest one appears to be in April when the Nuggets play Oklahoma City in Denver, travel to Dallas, then it is on to Oklahoma City after a day off and they finish at home against the Timberwolves.
- The Nuggets have two sets of five games in seven nights. The first one comes in January and sees them travel the east cost starting in Washington, going through Detroit, Cleveland and Philly before ending in New Jersey. Fortunately, that is not exactly a murders row of opponents. The second one is slightly more difficult as they play Utah, travel to Milwaukee, face off with Houston, travel to Golden State and finish up at home against Dallas.
- Denver plays Dallas four times. The first meeting is on November third on three days rest. The Other three are in Dallas on the second night of a back to back, at home in a game that will be their fifth in seven days, as mentioned in the previous bullet point, and then at Dallas on the second night of a back to back. The bottom line, do not expect the Nuggets to win the season series against the Mavericks.
- The four western conference teams Denver only plays three times are the Lakers (two in Denver, one in L.A.), the Warriors (one in Denver, two in Golden State), New Orleans (one in Denver, two in N.O.) and Memphis (two in Denver, one in Memphis).
- The longest road trip is the five game in seven nights trek out east mentioned above. However, March will be a bear as the Nuggets play seven of eight on the road including dates in Utah, Phoenix, Atlanta, Orlando and Miami with games in L.A. against the Clippers and at New Orleans thrown in for good measure. Not many cities the Nuggets have traditionally been successful in on the list although I am sure Blake Griffin will be out for the season by then and Chris Paul will have been traded.
- Things do not get easier in April as Denver plays five of eight on the road with games at Sacramento, at the Lakers, at Dallas, at Oklahoma City and at Utah. At least two of their last three are at home against Minnesota and Golden State.
- The longest home stand is equal to that of the longest road trip, five games as Chicago, Phoenix, Milwaukee, the Clippers and Memphis come to the Pepsi Center starting the day after Thanksgiving. The Nuggets get seven of eight at home in January with New Orleans, Phoenix, Miami (making their lone appearance in Denver until the NBA Finals), Cleveland, Oklahoma City, the Lakers and Indiana coming to town with a game in San Antonio scheduled after the Cleveland matchup.
- For those of you outside the Denver metro area the Nuggets will be on ESPN ten times, TNT nine times, NBATV five times and ABC once.
You can see a PDF of the full schedule here
. Take a gander and let me know what stretches you find the easiest and most difficult. For my money, if Denver is not sitting pretty after the home game against Charlotte on March second, they will be in trouble. The final month and a half will be a rough ride.