NBA Restart Complete National TV Schedule: Date and Time, Where to Watch, and Analysis


At long last, the return of the NBA is upon us.

The sport at the forefront of the coronavirus shutdown in the US was scheduled to return on July 30, with 22 of the league's 30 teams gathered at Disney World in Orlando, Florida for an eight-game finish to the regular season. Six teams would be sent home at the conclusion of the eight tuneup "seeding" games, leaving the usual 16 teams in the NBA's postseason.

There was no shortage of compelling story lines -- both on and off the court. From the fan-less bubble venues to social activism among players, as well as tantalizing matchups featuring both established and budding superstars alike, there's plenty to watch for.

Here's a look at the complete national TV schedule and the games we're especially looking forward to checking out.

Thursday, July 30

Utah Jazz-New Orleans Pelicans: 6:30 p.m. ET on TNT

Los Angeles Clippers-Los Angeles Lakers: 9 p.m. ET on TNT

Analysis: The first nationally televised game spotlights rookie sensation Zion Williamson and the up-and-coming Pelicans, who have only a slim chance of nabbing the eighth seed. They'll take on the Jazz, the team whose coronavirus cases became the flashpoint for the suspension.

The all-LA nightcap is a rematch from an opening night that feels like a lifetime ago, and looks like a probable preview of the Western Conference Finals.

Friday, July 31

Memphis Grizzlies-Portland Trail Blazers: 4:00 p.m. ET on NBA TV

Boston Celtics-Milwaukee Bucks: 6:30 p.m. ET on ESPN

Houston Rockets-Dallas Mavericks: 9:00 p.m. ET on ESPN

Analysis: The Bucks have locked up the top seed while the Celtics are likely to finish fourth, but this one will be an interesting test for two playoff-bound teams. Rockets-Mavs has all the makings of a Western Conference shootout between two teams fighting for playoff seeding.

Saturday, August 1

Miami Heat-Denver Nuggets: 1 p.m. ET on ESPN

Utah Jazz-Oklahoma City Thunder: 3:30 p.m. ET on ESPN

New Orleans Pelicans-Los Angeles Clippers: 6 p.m. ET on ESPN

Los Angeles Lakers-Toronto Raptors: 8:30 p.m. ET on ESPN

Analysis: The Heat were one of the league's most unusual and intriguing teams before the shutdown, and should be fun to watch against a retooled Denver lineup now featuring 7'2" "small forward" Bol Bol. Williamson and the Pelicans get a crack at Kawhi Leonard and the tough Clippers defense, while Lakers-Raptors pits last year's champions against the favorite to win it all this season.

Sunday, August 2

Portland Trail Blazers-Boston Celtics: 3:30 p.m. ET on ABC

Sacramento Kings-Orlando Magic: 6:00 p.m. ET on NBA TV

Milwaukee Bucks-Houston Rockets: 8:30 p.m. ET on ESPN

Analysis: This isn't the juiciest slate on the restart calendar, but Bucks-Rockets could be an entertaining way to end the weekend.

Monday, August 3

Toronto Raptors-Miami Heat: 1:30 p.m. ET on NBA TV

Denver Nuggets-Oklahoma City Thunder: 4:00 p.m. ET on NBA TV

Memphis Grizzlies-New Orleans Pelicans: 6:30 p.m. ET on ESPN

Los Angeles Lakers-Utah Jazz: 9:00 p.m. ET on ESPN

Analysis: How good are the Heat really? Their game against the Raptors will be an interesting test. The Grizzlies-Pelicans contest should be a fun clash of Rookie of the Year hopefuls in Williamson and Ja Morant. The Grizz entered play with the inside track on the No. 8 seed.

Tuesday, August 4

Brooklyn Nets-Milwaukee Bucks: 1:30 p.m. ET on NBA TV

Phoenix Suns-LA Clippers: 4:00 p.m. ET on NBA TV

Boston Celtics-Miami Heat: 6:30 p.m. ET on TNT

Houston Rockets-Portland Trail Blazers: 9:00 p.m. ET on TNT

Analysis: The Nets will be playing for the seventh or eighth seed, but with their roster decimated by injuries and opt-outs, they'll more than have their work cut out against the mighty Bucks. This could be a comically lopsided blowout, or David keeping it surprisingly close against Goliath. Either scenario would be fun.

Wednesday, August 5

Philadelphia 76ers-Washington Wizards: 4:00 p.m. ET on NBA TV

Oklahoma City Thunder-Los Angeles Lakers: 6:30 p.m. ET on ESPN

Brooklyn Nets-Boston Celtics: 9:00 p.m. ET on ESPN

Analysis: At the outset of the restart, the Thunder had a chance of nabbing any seed from No. 3 all the way down to No. 7. Their game against the Lakers will be a good gauge of just how dangerous they really are.

Thursday, August 6

New Orleans Pelicans-Sacramento Kings: 1:30 p.m. ET on NBA TV

Miami Heat-Milwaukee Bucks: 4:00 p.m. ET on TNT

Los Angeles Clippers-Dallas Mavericks: 6:30 p.m. ET on TNT

Los Angeles Lakers-Houston Rockets: 9:00 p.m. ET on TNT

Analysis: You can't go wrong with any of the contests in this quad-header. Take the over in Pelicans-Kings.

Friday, August 7

Oklahoma City Thunder-Memphis Grizzlies: 4:00 p.m. ET on NBA TV

Orlando Magic-Philadelphia 76ers: 6:30 p.m. ET on TNT

Boston Celtics-Toronto Raptors: 9:00 p.m. ET on TNT

Analysis: During the suspension, Ben Simmons reportedly became a power forward and met with a sports psychologist about his famous lack of a jump shot. You'll want to tune in to see if either of those things are true. Plus, the Magic get back stud Jonathan Isaac -- who was thought to be lost for the remainder of the regular season until the unexpected suspension afforded his injured knee time to mend.

The Celtics meanwhile get another shot at a potential Eastern Conference playoff opponent, in the Raptors.

Saturday, August 8

Los Angeles Clippers-Portland Trail Blazers: 1:00 p.m. ET on TNT

Utah Jazz-Denver Nuggets: 3:30 p.m. ET on TNT

Los Angeles Lakers-Indiana Pacers: 6:00 p.m. ET on TNT

Milwaukee Bucks-Dallas Mavericks: 8:30 p.m. ET on ESPN

Analysis: Victor Oladipo might be back for the Pacers, but his potential return is somewhat offset by the loss Domantas Sabonis to a foot injury. Still, Oladipo had finally realized his immense potential in the couple seasons before a devastating knee injury. If he's back, he's well worth watching against LeBron and AD.

Bucks-Mavs could make for an entertaining interconference nightcap. If anyone has a trick or two to confound the unstoppable Bucks, it's Dallas coach Rick Carlisle.

Sunday, August 9

San Antonio Spurs-New Orleans Pelicans: 3:00 p.m. ET on ABC

Philadelphia 76ers-Portland Trail Blazers: 6:30 p.m. ET on NBA TV

Brooklyn Nets-Los Angeles Clippers: 9:00 p.m. ET on NBA TV

Analysis: Zionmania continues with a Sunday matinee against the Spurs, but there's not a ton at stake in this triple-header.

Monday, August 10

Dallas Mavericks-Utah Jazz: 3:00 p.m. ET on NBA TV

Toronto Raptors-Milwaukee: Bucks 6:30 p.m. ET on ESPN

Denver Nuggets-Los Angeles Lakers: 9:00 p.m. ET on TNT

Analysis: The Mavericks and Jazz could be fighting for the fifth seed, if the Mavs play well and Utah stumbles.

The Raptors and Bucks won't be playing for seeding, but their must-see tilt could be a preview of the Eastern Conference Finals.

Tuesday, August 11

Houston Rockets-San Antonio Spurs: 2:00 p.m. ET on NBA TV

Boston Celtics-Memphis Grizzlies: 6:30 p.m. ET on TNT

New Orleans Pelicans-Sacramento Kings: 9:00 p.m. ET on TNT

Analysis: Barring a minor miracle, this could be our last look at Williamson until next season.

Wednesday, August 12

Indiana Pacers-Houston Rockets: 4:00 p.m. ET on NBA TV

Toronto Raptors-Philadelphia 76ers: 6:30 p.m. ET on ESPN

Los Angeles Clippers-Denver Nuggets: 9:00 p.m. ET on ESPN

Analysis: The Sixers are going to the playoffs no matter what, but after a disappointing regular season they'd feel a lot better about it with a strong restart. A good showing against the Raptors would be a nice confidence springboard.