Current Discussions subPWE's Stats PWE NBA Bracket 2015 Home
Blazers 2013-14 Schedule Preview: Primed for a Playoff Run? - Pinwheel Empire
5

Blazers 2013-14 Schedule Preview: Primed for a Playoff Run?

submitted 4 years ago by in Game Preview

Lillard Dunk

Image Courtesy of the AP

Well, here we go again, another Blazers schedule released and unlike last year’s back heavy schedule, this one is a little more balanced.  A rough start, an up and down middle and a finish with a lot of home games.  It sets up reasonably nicely for the Blazers to make a playoff push this season.

Here is a link to the full schedule: www.nba.com/blazers/schedule/

Schedule Basics:

Portland plays every western conference team 4 times (except those listed below), and every eastern conference team twice.

Western conference teams played three times (2 home, 1 road): LA Clippers, Memphis

Western conference teams played three times (2 road, 1 home): LA Lakers, Dallas

Longest road trip: 5 games, twice (DAL-HOU-MEM-SA-NO and CHA-MIA-ORL-ATL-CHI) both in March.

Longest homestand: 4 games, twice (IND-OKC-UTA-DAL) in December and (BKN-DEN-LAL-ATL) in February/March.

Back to backs: 19

National TV Games (non NBA TV):

TNT-4 (home to HOU, LAC and DEN and at LAL)

ESPN-2 (home to ATL and at SA)

Month by Month Analysis:

October/November:

Home: 7 (4 vs. +.500 teams last season)

Road:  9 (4 vs. +.500 teams)

Back to backs: 4

Key Games: at Phoenix (season opener), vs. San Antonio (home opener), vs. Chicago

Summary: This month should provide both a fair start and an early proving ground for this young Blazers squad.  Both of the first two road games are winnable (yes even in Denver) but the team’s first two home games (vs. SA and HOU) should both be very tough.  The highlight of the opening month, other than the home opener, may be Rose’s expected return with the Bulls the weekend before Thanksgiving.

December:

Home: 8 (6 vs. +.500 teams last season)

Road:  8 (3 vs. +.500 teams)

Back to backs: 5

Key Games: at LA Lakers, vs. and at OKC, vs. Miami.

Summary: Here’s the good news, the road games this month aren’t very tough, although that four game stretch against some of the up and coming eastern conference powers could prove tough.  The bad news, the home games are brutal, featuring Miami’s only visit of the year (50/50 on whether Oden plays) and a bunch of games against western conference rivals besides.  Not exactly a Christmas present for the Blazers.

January:

Home: 8 (3 vs. +.500 teams last season)

Road:  6 (4 vs. +.500 teams)

Back to backs: 4

Key Games: vs. Cleveland, at Houston, at Golden State

Summary: 2014 dawns nice and fairly easy for Portland this upcoming season, with a nice run of home games against winnable opponents, including another expected Lillard vs. Kyrie showdown in Portland.  The Blazers also have a brutal HOU/OKC back to back in mid January that comes at the end of a four games in five days stretch.

February:

Home: 6 (4 vs. +.500 teams last season)

Road:  6 (4 vs. +.500 teams)

Back to backs: 3

Key Games: at Indiana, vs. OKC, vs. Brooklyn

Summary: The shortest month of the year is perhaps the toughest month for the Blazers.  There is not a single game in February that you can circle and say the Blazers will certainly win.   If the team is going to make a playoff push, they had best find a way to end this month with a record above the .500 mark, which won’t be easy.

March:

Home: 7 (5 vs. +.500 teams last season)

Road:  10 (6 vs. +.500 teams)

Back to backs: 3

Key Games: at Miami, vs. Lakers, at San Antonio

Summary: The ides of march are pretty brutal for the team this year.  March features only three back to backs, despite the twin five game road trips but no more than two days between games the entire month. There are a lot of games the team should win this month, assuming they haven’t blown the team up and traded LMA, but all those road miles might take a toll on the team’s record.

April:

Home: 5 (2 vs. +.500 teams last season)

Road:  2 (2 vs. +.500 teams)

Back to backs: 0

Key Games: at Lakers, at Utah, vs. Clippers (season finale)

Summary: If the Blazers enter this month in playoff position, they should probably stay there.  It’s not the easiest finish in the world but compared to last year, where it seemed like every single opponent in April was fighting for their playoff lives, its reasonably easy.

no comments

skywaker9 (David) is a Portland native and passionate Blazers fan. He currently works as a University fiscal analyst for the Higher Education Coordinating Commission. He also has a PhD in Public Affairs and Policy at Portland State University. David is a former political activist who chose to focus on sports because they made him happy. He primarily writes previews for PWE and one of his primary goals is to inform Blazer fans everywhere about those players on other teams they may not have heard of but should (such as Nikola Vucevic).