ESPN Tips Off 2016-17 NBA Season with Two Doubleheaders During Opening Week—Thunder-Sixers, Rockets-Lakers; Cavaliers-Raptors, Warriors-Pelicans

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ESPN Tips Off 2016-17 NBA Season with Two Doubleheaders During Opening Week—Thunder-Sixers, Rockets-Lakers; Cavaliers-Raptors, Warriors-Pelicans

  • Two Prime-Time Doubleheaders Spotlighting LeBron James, Stephen Curry, Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook, James Harden and More
  • SportsCenter on the Road in Cleveland for NBA Champion Cavaliers’ Regular Season Debut
  • NBA Commissioner Adam Silver To Appear on The Jump—ESPN’s Daily NBA Studio Show— on Oct. 26; Brand New Studio Set
  • ESPN’s Hour-Long Pregame Show, NBA Countdown, Makes Regular Season Debut on Oct. 26

ESPN’s blockbuster opening week of the NBA season is highlighted by two prime-time doubleheaders (Wednesday, Friday) and superstars LeBron James, Stephen Curry, Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook and James Harden in action.

Wednesday’s doubleheader on Oct. 26 starts with the Oklahoma City Thunder and Westbrook taking center court when they visit the Philadelphia 76ers and Jahlil Okafor on ESPN at 8 p.m. ET. Mike Breen will provide commentary with analyst Jeff Van Gundy and reporter Doris Burke. Later the night, the Houston Rockets and Harden will visit the Los Angeles Lakers and second overall 2016 NBA Draft pick Brandon Ingram at 10:30 p.m. on ESPN. Mark Jones will call the game action alongside analyst Mark Jackson and reporter J.A. Adande.

The defending NBA Champion Cleveland Cavaliers and James will visit the Toronto Raptors and Kyle Lowry on Oct. 28 at 7 p.m. to start off Friday’s doubleheader on ESPN. Commentary will be provided by Breen and NBA Hall of Famer and analyst Hubie Brown and reporter Cassidy Hubbarth. Later that night, the Golden State Warrior and Curry will take on the New Orleans Pelicans and Anthony Davis at 9:30 p.m. on ESPN with Ryan Ruocco, Van Gundy and Burke on the call.

NBA Countdown charged by Mountain Dew will make their NBA regular season debut with host Michelle Beadle and analysts Jalen Rose, Chauncey Billups and Tracy McGrady ahead of Wednesday’s doubleheader for an hour-long episode at 7 p.m. on ESPN.

SportsCenter on the Road will originate from Cleveland for the Cavaliers’ regular season debut against the New York Knicks on Tuesday, Oct. 25 with hosts Sage Steele and Jay Crawford for the 6 p.m. edition of SportsCenter. Additionally, SportsCenter will be live from Cleveland all day long with ESPN’s Michael Eaves and Marty Smith reporting at different venues, including Cleveland’s very own B. Loft Barbershop and Town Talk restaurant. ESPN team reporters Dave McMenamin (Cavaliers) and Ian Begley (Knicks) will be court side during shoot-around as well as ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith who will provide coverage throughout the day. Smith will also appear on ESPN2’s First Take (10 a.m. – noon), live from TownHall at 1909 West 25th Street in Cleveland. ESPN Radio will cover the Cavaliers versus Knicks game that night at 7 p.m. Marc Kestecher and analyst Jon Barry will call the game action.

The Jump, ESPN’s daily NBA studio show, returns for the NBA regular season with a brand new studio set on Monday, Oct. 24 with host Rachel Nichols and various NBA analysts and insiders on ESPN2 at 3:30 p.m. NBA commissioner Adam Silver will join Nichols at the desk on Wednesday, Oct. 26. Silver will also join ESPN’s daily morning show Mike & Mike on Tuesday, Oct. 25 with Mike Greenberg and Mike Golic on ESPN2 and ESPN Radio within the 7 a.m. hour via phone.

Additional coverage:

NBA on ESPN Schedule for 2016-17 NBA Opening Week

Date Time (ET) Game/Commentators
Wed, Oct 26 7 p.m. NBA Countdown charged by Mountain Dew

Michelle Beadle, Jalen Rose, Chauncey Billups, Tracy McGrady

8 p.m. NBA Wednesday Presented by State Farm

Oklahoma City Thunder at Philadelphia 76ers

Mike Breen, Jeff Van Gundy, Doris Burke

10:30 p.m. NBA Wednesday Presented by State Farm

Houston Rockets at Los Angeles Lakers

Mark Jones, Mark Jackson, J.A. Adande

Fri, Oct 28 7 p.m. NBA Friday Presented by State Farm

Cleveland Cavaliers at Toronto Raptors

Mike Breen, Hubie Brown, Cassidy Hubbarth

9:30 p.m. NBA Friday Presented by State Farm

Golden State Warriors at New Orleans Pelicans

Ryan Ruocco, Jeff Van Gundy, Doris Burke

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Media contacts: Ben Cafardo at 860-766-3496 or [email protected] (@Ben_ESPN);

Gianina Thompson at 860-766-7022 or [email protected] (@Gianina_ESPN).

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Gianina Thompson

“Never wish for it more than you work for it.” My dad has told me this ever since we watched the New York Yankees win the World Series in 1996. Living by those words has brought me to ESPN as their Senior Publicist for NBA, MLB, FIBA, and Little League. Working for the World Wide Leader in Sports, it comes naturally that I have a competitive nature. Competing on a Division 1 college rowing team and receiving both my master’s and bachelor’s degrees before turning 22 years old, further illustrates that. Sports are more than entertainment; it’s hopes for something bigger than yesterday.
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