NBA Releases TV Schedule for First Half of 2020-21 Season

LeBron James, #23 of the Los Angeles Lakers, shoots the ball during the third quarter against the Houston Rockets in Game One of the Western Conference Second Round during the 2020 NBA Playoffs at AdventHealth Arena at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex on Sept. 4, 2020 in Lake Buena Vista, Florida.
(Image credit: Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)

The NBA Friday released the television schedule for the first half of its 2020-21 season, including its Christmas and Martin Luther King Jr. holiday lineup of games.

ESPN and ABC will televise a total of 49 games during the first half of the season, which begins Dec. 22. The schedule includes five Christmas Day games --  New Orleans Pelicans-Miami Heat; Golden State Warriors-Milwaukee Bucks; Brooklyn Nets-Boston Celtics; Dallas Mavericks-Los Angeles Lakers and Los Angeles Clippers-Denver Nuggets. ABC will air five primetime Saturday night games through Feb. 27, beginning Jan. 30 with the Lakers-Celtics game.

TNT will air 36 games through Feb. 27, including a Dec. 22 opening night doubleheader featuring the Warriors and Nets, followed by Lakers-Clippers. TNT’s three-game Martin Luther King Jr. holiday lineup includes Warriors-Lakers, Phoenix Suns-Memphis Grizzlies and Bucks-Nets.

Related: NBA to Start New Season in September

NBA TV will air 61 live games during the first half of the season, beginning with a Dec. 26 tripleheader featuring the Grizzlies-Atlanta Hawks, Philadelphia 76ers-New York Knicks, Houston Rockets-Portland Trailblazers games. 

The schedule for the second half of the season will be released at a later date, according to the league, which will play a truncated 72 game schedule due to the pandemic. 

R. Thomas Umstead

R. Thomas Umstead serves as senior content producer, programming for Multichannel News, Broadcasting + Cable and Next TV. During his more than 30-year career as a print and online journalist, Umstead has written articles on a variety of subjects ranging from TV technology, marketing and sports production to content distribution and development. He has provided expert commentary on television issues and trends for such TV, print, radio and streaming outlets as Fox News, CNBC, the Today show, USA Today, The New York Times and National Public Radio. Umstead has also filmed, produced and edited more than 100 original video interviews, profiles and news reports featuring key cable television executives as well as entertainers and celebrity personalities.