NBA schedule 2018: 5 things to know about opening night

Fans will have a two-game doubleheader to enjoy on Tuesday's first night of NBA action (October 16).

The 2018-19 NBA season will officially tipoff on Tuesday night. Four teams are in action, with the defending world champions featured in the doubleheader. Below are five things you need to know for the first night of NBA games on the schedule.

1

NBA playoffs rematch opens schedule

Last year's NBA playoffs saw the Boston Celtics vs Philadelphia 76ers take place, but it could have been much more. It was a young, rising team against the more experienced veterans. Boston's experience won, even with their top two stars out. Now, the teams will meet up in Boston for an opening night rematch. This game begins at 8 PM ET on TNT.

2

Celtics' All-Stars are back

While Jayson Tatum is on the rise and Al Horford has been a major star, two other stars are back. Gordon Hayward missed pretty much all of last season after his horrific fall in the Celtics' first game. Kyrie Irving played a lot more of the season, but missed the playoffs. Both players are healthy, and ready to contribute so it should be interesting to see how Boston looks.

3

Celtics among NBA title favorites

Boston was shut down in their attempt to reach the NBA finals last season, due to LeBron James' Cavs. LeBron has now departed for the West's Lakers, leaving the East open. Since Boston has been near or at the top the past few seasons, it puts them in prime position. Right now, they have the second-best odds (+500) to win it all behind the reigning champion Warriors (-195).

4

Warriors will celebrate their championship

The second matchup of the doubleheader will feature Golden State as they raise their latest championship banner. Players will also receive their rings. It marks the third title for players such as Steph Curry, Draymond Green, and Klay Thompson, as well as Kevin Durant's second.

5

Golden State's title defense opens with OKC

Russell Westbrook, Paul George, and the Thunder are on the schedule for the Warriors' first game of the new season. As of right now, the home team is a heavy favorite, with oddsmakers giving them a point spread of 12.5 for the first game. Can Westbrook and company defy the odds, or will the champions prove to be too much?

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