The NBA has announced the schedule for the first round of the 2020 NBA Playoffs, and the Toronto Raptors will open up their first-round series against the Brooklyn Nets on Monday August 17 at 4:00 pm.
Unfortunately, the Raptors and Nets look to have gotten the short straw here: The first three games of the series will be played on weekday afternoons. Here’s the full rundown:
- Game 1: Monday, August 17 at 4:00 p.m.
- Game 2: Wednesday, August 19 at 1:30 p.m.
- Game 3: Friday, August 21 at 1:30 p.m.
- Game 4: Sunday, August 23 at 6:30 p.m.
- Game 5 (if necessary): Tuesday, August 25, time TBD
- Game 6 (if necessary): Thursday, August 27, time TBD
- Game 7 (if necessary): Saturday, August 29, time TBD
The Raptors’ TV partners haven’t released the Canadian broadcast schedule yet, but we’ll update you as soon as we have it.
For now: Let’s complain about those afternoon games, shall we?
Look, we get it. This isn’t going to be series that drives big ratings. The Raptors don’t generally do well on U.S. national TV, and the Nets are seriously lacking star power. The Raptors will be heavy favourites, perhaps even to sweep, so no one expects a close or exciting series. There aren’t any cool angles, narratives or rivalries here.
We also are fully aware of the condensed schedule in the Bubble. The NBA has to play four games every day in order to keep the playoffs moving along swiftly.
We also understand why every weekday game featuring Boston, Philadelphia and both Los Angeles teams is an evening affair; these are the big markets, the teams with big name players, and they’re gonna drive ratings.
We get it.
But that’s small comfort if you’re a Raptors fan (or a Nets fan, or a Jazz or Nuggets fan, whose series has a similar schedule) who works during the day. You’re gonna miss three playoff games! That stinks.
Let’s hope the Raptors do indeed make short work of the Nets, and that the series is as boring as most seem to think it will be, so those fans who can’t catch the games don’t miss much. Do it for your hard-working fans, Raptors!
We’ll have full series previews and coverage coming over the next few days right here at Raptors HQ, so stay tuned.