The Cleveland Cavaliers will open the 2018-19 campaign on Wednesday, Oct. 17 on the road against the Toronto Raptors, marking the first time Cleveland will tip off the season on the road since 2015-16 and just the third time in the past 11 seasons. Cleveland’s home opener at Quicken Loans Arena will take place on Sunday, Oct. 21 versus the Atlanta Hawks at 6:00 PM. The Cavaliers are slated to host 18 home weekend games comprised of five Friday games, eight Saturday games and five Sunday games.
Highlights of the home schedule include two matchups with Cleveland’s 2018 Eastern Conference Finals opponent, the Boston Celtics, on Feb. 5 and March 26, two games each versus the Toronto Raptors (Dec. 1 and March 11) and Indiana Pacers (Oct. 27 and Jan. 8), a matchup with LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers on Nov. 21, a visit from the world champion Golden State Warriors on Dec. 5, a Sunday contest versus the Philadelphia 76ers on Dec. 16 and a special Martin Luther King Jr. Day matinee game against the Chicago Bulls on Jan. 21 at 1:00 PM. Cleveland will make two national television appearances on ESPN on Wednesday, Nov. 21 versus the Lakers and Wednesday, Feb. 13 versus Brooklyn.
Additional marquee opponents coming to Cleveland only once this season include the Oklahoma City Thunder on Wednesday, Nov. 7, the Houston Rockets on Saturday, Nov. 24, the Portland Trail Blazers on Monday, Feb. 25 and the San Antonio Spurs on Sunday, April 7.
Cleveland will match up against each Eastern Conference opponent four times with the exception of Atlanta (two home, one road), New York (two home, one road), Orlando (one home, two road) and Philadelphia (one home, two road). Each Western Conference opponent will play the Cavaliers twice – once at The Q and once on the road.
FOX Sports Ohio will broadcast 81 of Cleveland’s 82 regular season games on television, with the exception of the Nov. 21 matchup versus the Los Angeles Lakers, which will be carried exclusively on ESPN. All 82 Cavs games will again be broadcast on flagship radio stations WTAM 1100, FM 100.7 WMMS and the Cavaliers Radio Network, as well as La Mega 87.7 FM (Spanish).
Other ‘stats’ on Cleveland’s 2018-19 schedule include:
- 14 sets of back-to-back games, including four home-road sets (Oct. 24-25, Nov. 13-14, Jan. 8-9 and March 11-12), two road-home sets (Nov. 23-24 and Nov. 30-Dec. 1), three home-home sets (Dec. 7-8, Jan. 4-5 and March 2-3) and five road-road sets (Dec. 18-19, Dec. 28-29, Jan. 18-19, Feb. 8-9 and April 4-5).
- Three matinee games at home this season, which include Sunday, Dec. 16 vs. Philadelphia (3:30 p.m. ET), Monday, Jan. 21 vs. Chicago (1:00 p.m. ET) and Sunday, April 7 vs. San Antonio (3:00 p.m. ET).
- Cleveland’s longest homestand consists of five games over 15 days (including All-Star break) from Feb. 11-25, featuring contests versus the New York Knicks (Feb. 11) and Brooklyn Nets (Feb. 13) before the break and Phoenix (Feb. 21), Memphis (Feb. 23) and Portland (Feb. 25) after the break. Including those three post-All-Star break contests, Cleveland will have five of their next six games at The Q following the break (Feb. 21-March 3).
- The team’s second-longest homestand is four games over seven days from Jan. 2-8 and includes matchups with Miami (Jan. 2), Utah (Jan. 4), New Orleans (Jan. 5) and Indiana (Jan. 8).
- The Cavs also have five three-game homestands (Oct. 27-Nov. 1, Dec. 5-8, Dec. 12-16, Jan. 29-Feb 5 and March 18-22) and four two-game homestands (Oct. 21-24, Nov. 24-26, March 2-3 and April 7-9).
- Their longest road trip, spanning six games over 11 days from Jan. 9-19, includes trips to New Orleans (Jan. 9), Houston (Jan. 11), L.A. Lakers (Jan. 13), Portland (Jan. 16), Utah (Jan. 18) and Denver (Jan 19).
- The Wine and Gold will travel 35,670 miles throughout the season.
- The Cavaliers will play eight home games in December, their most contests at The Q in a single month for the season. They will play eight road games each in November, December, January and March, tied for their most away games in a single month during 2018-19.
- The Cavs’ final road game will be against the defending champion Golden State Warriors on April 5.
- Cleveland will close out the regular season at home versus the Charlotte Hornets on April 9.
Here is the complete schedule below:
Photo/courtesy: Cleveland Cavaliers