NBA Schedule: 10 Games You Need to Watch Including Cavaliers, Lakers and Warriors

LeBron James, back center, and Stephen Curry
Stephen Curry, front center, and LeBron James battle for the ball at Quicken Loans Arena, Cleveland, June 16, 2016. James and Curry headline the first week of the 2017-18 NBA season. Bob Donnan/Getty

The NBA released its schedule for 2017-18 on Monday night, and immediately threw up a whole clutch of intriguing story lines.

Chief among those is the unresolved question of where Kyrie Irving, the Cleveland Cavaliers' star point guard, will be playing. Irving, linked with the Phoenix Suns this month, wants a trade away from the Cavaliers, who entertain the Boston Celtics on opening night.

Here are the games you should look out for in the first week of the new season.

1. Houston Rockets at Golden State Warriors, October 17

A doozy from Oracle Arena on the first day of the season. Can Chris Paul and James Harden's two-headed ballhandling monster provide a real rival for the Warriors? We will get a first hint here.

2. Milwaukee Bucks at Boston Celtics, October 18

Can the Celtics repeat as Eastern Conference champions? Much will depend on how Gordon Hayward, one of the marquee free-agent signings of summer 2017, can help Isaiah Thomas.

3. Minnesota Timberwolves at San Antonio Spurs, October 18

Jimmy Butler, Karl-Anthony Towns and Andrew Wiggins could be one of the most dynamic front courts in the league. They run into Kawhi Leonard and the ever-excellent Spurs first up.

4. Portland Trail Blazers at Phoenix Suns, October 18

Will Kyrie Irving be playing in the Nevada desert by the middle of October? Even if he isn't, the Suns should improve on last season with the startling talent of shooting guard Devin Booker.

5. New York Knicks at Oklahoma City Thunder, October 19

Unmissable for a variety of reasons. Are the Knicks going to be dysfunctional again? Will Carmelo Anthony still be there? And how good are Russell Westbrook and Paul George going to be together?

6. L.A. Clippers at Los Angeles Lakers, October 19

The Chris Paul-less Clippers visit the Lakers for a first sighting on national television in the new season of Lonzo Ball and Magic Johnson's young, exciting team.

7. Cleveland Cavaliers at Milwaukee Bucks, October 20

LeBron James and friends head out on the road to Wisconsin, but will it be James and Irving in the back court or James and Derrick Rose?

8. Golden State Warriors at New Orleans Pelicans, October 20

The Warriors are certain to be one of the top two seeds in the Western Conference but some mystery still surrounds the Pelicans. Anthony Davis and DeMarcus Cousins is the scariest front-court combination in the league but only if they can work together effectively.

9. Philadelphia 76ers at Toronto Raptors, October 21

The Markelle Fultz-led 76ers should be energetic and exciting at the very least. One of the league's elite point guards, DeMar DeRozan, needs to take the Raptors to the next level.

10. San Antonio Spurs at Chicago Bulls, October 21

How far can an ageing Dwyane Wade take the Bulls now that Butler has departed? What Wade would give for a player of Leonard's ability to pay alongside him…

NBA Schedule: 10 Games You Need to Watch Including Cavaliers, Lakers and Warriors | Sports