25 New Orleans Pelicans games to watch in 2022-23

In conjunction with the official release of the 2022-23 NBA schedule on Wednesday, it’s time for Pelicans fans to get out their calendars and jot down important dates. While Pelicans.com recommends watching all 82 games, the following is a list of 25 that “can’t be missed” in 2022-23. All 11 New Orleans games scheduled for national television (six on TNT, five on ESPN) appear in this breakdown:

Wednesday October 19 in Brooklyn

The 21st season in New Orleans franchise history officially kicks off at the Barclays Center against a Brooklyn team that has had an interesting off-season. The Pelicans return to the Big Apple after the All-Star hiatus, visiting New York at Madison Square Garden on February 25th.

The Pelicans’ home game at the Smoothie King Center concludes at 6 p.m. on an NFL Sunday (there is no conflict with the Saints playing in Arizona on Thursday, October 20). Donovan Mitchell leads a jazz team that brought longtime center Rudy Gobert to Minnesota this summer.

The first meeting of 2022-23 between Southwest Division opponents will be televised on Turner, which televises doubleheaders during the football season on Tuesday. Luka Doncic has been prolific in his four pro seasons against New Orleans, including a 49-point game at Crescent City in February.

Friday, October 28 in Phoenix (ESPN)

One of the most entertaining first-round series of the 2022 NBA Playoffs caught the attention of ESPN decision makers, who decided to broadcast the first matchup of the regular season between the Pelicans and the Suns.

Wednesday, November 2nd at LA Lakers

New Orleans won the Lake Show 3-0 in head-to-head last season, highlighted by a comeback from over 20 points behind at the Smoothie King Center in March. An April 1 triumph in Southern California dealt a major blow to the Lakers’ dwindling play-in hopes.

The defending NBA champions are making their first of two visits to Louisiana (the Warriors’ latter visit is also early on, on Nov. 21). The well-known trio of Steph Curry, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green claimed their fourth championship title since 2015.

Yes, Morant and the Grizzlies make their only stop at the Smoothie King Center a long time ago in the regular season (the second visit isn’t until April 5th). NOLA will be looking for a payback after Memphis won last season’s last three matchups by averaging 20.0 points.

New Orleans Pelicans Plan Release Video | 2022-23 NBA season

Led by Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown, reigning Eastern Conference champions the Celtics added depth in the offseason in the form of veteran signings Malcolm Brogdon and Danilo Gallinari. New Orleans will be visiting Beantown on January 11th.

Friday, November 25th in Memphis

Because of the Bayou Classic, one of college football’s greatest traditions, featuring Grambling and Southern, New Orleans always plays on the streets on Thanksgiving weekend. This year’s Turkey Day trip concludes in Tennessee after stopping in San Antonio on Wednesday.

Two-time reigning NBA MVP, Nuggets center Nikola Jokic leads his reinforced squad to the Crescent City. Denver is expected to get Jamal Murray and Michael Porter Jr. back from injury layoffs. This 2:30 p.m. pick comes the day before the Saints play Monday Night Football in Tampa Bay.

More than seven months after the Suns ended the Pelicans’ season during the 2022 NBA playoffs, Phoenix is ​​returning to the Smoothie King Center. It will be an all-sun weekend in New Orleans that will also host a 2:30 p.m. Sunday matinee against last season’s No. 1 Western seed.

For the second time in December, a two-time MVP visits Louisiana. Giannis Antetokounmpo leads 2021 NBA champion Bucks, who also includes high-profile winger Khris Middleton and former Pelicans standout guard Jrue Holiday.

The first meeting between two rising Western Conference clubs comes in the 34th game of the regular season by NOLA, but is the first of two Timberwolves mid-winter visits (the latter being January 25). Brandon Ingram sunk a deep winner against Minnesota last season.

Match recap: Pelicans 128, Timberwolves 125

Tuesday, January 31 in Denver (TNT)

Two days after visiting Milwaukee on Sunday of the NFL Conference Championship, the middle game of a very difficult three-game road trip heads to Colorado. Pelicans Nuggets will be the second half of a TNT doubleheader; two days later, New Orleans ends its outing in Dallas.

For a second straight season, the Lakers only come to Crescent City for the latter part of the campaign, this time the weekend before Super Bowl Sunday (Feb. 12). LeBron James, Anthony Davis and Russell Westbrook return to NOLA on March 14th.

Trae Young’s backcourt and newcomer Dejounte Murray led the Hawks to their only regular-season visit to the Smoothie King Center. This is the third of three Pelicans home games to be televised nationally by Turner.

One of the biggest comebacks in New Orleans franchise history came last season when the Cavaliers came to the Smoothie King Center. The Pelicans rebounded from a halftime deficit of 23 points to overtake Cleveland.

Wednesday, February 15 at LA Lakers (ESPN)

New Orleans’ final game before the All-Star break (the All-Star game itself is taking place in Salt Lake City on Feb. 19) will be at the Crypto.com Arena, where the Pelicans defeated the Lakers last season defeated twice. The Pels also open the unofficial second half on the road, meeting Toronto on February 23.

The Magic and the Pelicans don’t necessarily have much in common, but they each own a current No. 1 draft pick from Duke University. Orlando rookie forwards Paolo Banchero (2022) and Zion Williamson (2019) from New Orleans were selected first in their class.

Wednesday, March 1 in Portland (ESPN)

The second of four head-to-head meetings between the Pelicans and Trail Blazers will be the second half of a midweek doubleheader on ESPN. Damian Lillard returns to the pitch for Portland after missing much of the 2021-22 season through injury.

Both Mavericks visits to the Crescent City will be broadcast on national airwaves. Dallas lost Jalen Brunson in free agency but brings back Tim Hardaway Jr. from injury and added Bigs Christian Wood and JaVale McGee in the offseason.

The Hornets are one of the NBA’s most entertaining teams, with a racy attack led by third-year All-Star point guard LaMelo Ball. This home game in New Orleans precedes a potentially important four-game road trip against western opponents.

Tuesday, March 28th at the Golden State (TNT)

The third stop on a challenging four-game trek brings the Pelicans to the Chase Center, one of the toughest venues in the NBA. The Warriors went 30-11 at home in San Francisco last regular season, then 11-1 in the postseason, including 9-0 wins against west visitors Denver, Memphis and Dallas.

Thursday, March 30th in Denver (TNT)

NOLA’s penultimate away game of 2022-23 will be at Ball Arena and will precede a four-game homestand in April against the Clippers, Sacramento, Memphis and New York (the Pelicans 82 game will be in Minnesota on April 9).

The Pelicans conclude their 41-game home roster with a matchup against the Knicks, who have won their last two trips to the Smoothie King Center in high-scoring affairs. The post-season seeding position could be at stake for either team.

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