NBA releases schedule for Orlando restart

The Milwaukee Bucks are hoping to reach the NBA Finals for the first time since 1974 when they head to Orlando next month to restart the season. Before they enter the playoffs, though, they’ll have to face a tough eight-game schedule that will see them face many of the teams they’ll have to topple to win the Eastern Conference.

Milwaukee’s first game when things get going at ESPN’s Wide World of Sports will be against the Boston Celtics on July 31. The teams split the two games they played earlier in the year. Boston enters the restart No. 3 in the East and 9.5 games back of top-seeded Milwaukee.

The Bucks will follow that with a game against Houston (Aug. 2), who they beat earlier in the year. Then it’s on to Brooklyn (Aug. 4) before taking on a Miami (Aug. 6) team that beat them twice during the regular season.

Milwaukee’s final four games include a matchup against defending NBA champion Toronto (Aug. 10), along with two teams fighting for playoff spots in Washington (Aug. 11) and Memphis (Aug. 13). They’ll also see Dallas (Aug. 8), with the Mavericks potentially trying to move up in Western Conference playoff picture.

Milwaukee enters the restart 6.5 games up on the Raptors for the No. 1 seed in the East.

The NBA was forced to shut the season down in March when the coronavirus hit the country. It’ll have been more than four months since the last game is played when the league tips things off on July 30 with the New Orleans Pelicans facing the Utah Jazz.

July 31: Boston Celtics
Aug. 2: Houston Rockets
Aug. 4: Brooklyn Nets
Aug. 6: Miami Heat
Aug. 8: Dallas Mavericks
Aug. 10: Toronto Raptors
Aug. 11: Washington Wizards
Aug. 13: Memphis Grizzlies