The 2022-23 NBA schedule was released at 3 p.m. ET on Wednesday afternoon and we got a few surprises. One of them is the implementation of “Rivals Week”, which will be 11 games during the week of January 24-28. Take a look at the full list of games below:
New this year: "NBA Rivals Week"— Ben Golliver (@BenGolliver) August 17, 2022
11 rivalry games from Jan. 24-28:
- Lonzo Ball/LaMelo Ball
- Nikola Jokic/Joel Embiid
Some of these are really grasping at straws. Lonzo Ball vs. LaMelo Ball is less of a rivalry game and more narrative with the two bros. playing each other. The Los Angeles Clippers vs. Los Angeles Lakers is the most intriguing one with Kawhi Leonard expected to be back this season. Brooklyn Nets vs. Philadelphia 76ers would be the other polarizing matchup. We don’t know if it’ll be Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving vs. James Harden and Joel Embiid or will Ben Simmons decide to return and face his old team.
Of course, New York Knicks vs. the Nets is on there. Lakers-Celtics more historic than recent. The peculiar rivalry games include the Golden State Warriors vs. the Memphis Grizzlies and Toronto Raptors. Neither of those teams are rivals to the Dubs really. Nikola Jokic vs. Embiid isn’t a rivalry, really just two of the top centers in the NBA. Embiid could feel snubbed of MVP while Jokic has won in back-to-back seasons. Phoenix Suns vs. Dallas Mavericks also not a rivalry. The Mavs just toasted the Suns in the second round of the playoffs last season.