Just a few days go, the NBA released the 2013-2014 season schedule in it’s entirety. For our Atlanta Hawks, you can view their full schedule by clicking this link. However if that doesn’t suit you, I went ahead and did a breakdown of the upcoming Hawks season, featuring all of the schedule details you really need to be aware of.
Longest home stretch:
From December 4th through December 13th, the Hawks will play their longest stretch of games at home. This is a four-game home stand featuring the likes of the Clippers, Cavaliers, Thunder and Wizards with none of the games being on back-to-back nights. Atlanta also merely has a single three-game home stand, which is in the middle of December against the Lakers, Kings and Jazz.
Longest road stretch:
The Hawks will have to deal with a 6-game road trip as the season moves ahead of it’s midpoint, spanning from the 26th of February to the 10th of March. This voyage will include meetings against the Celtics, Suns, Blazers, along with the Warriors and Clippers on back-to-back nights and will finally end in Utah.
Easiest stretch of games:
Luckily for Atlanta, their easiest group of games follows right after their longest road trip of the year. From March 13th until the end of the month, Atlanta won’t have to face any championship contenders, and their strongest opponent will be the Minnesota Timberwolves. On deck during this span will be the Bucks, Nuggets, Bobcats, Raptors, Pelicans, the Raptors yet again, Suns, T-Wolves, Blazers, Wizards and Sixers.
These games being played in late March brings along it’s share of pros and cons. On one hand, this is about the time the Playoffs race thickens around the league. Unfortunately, it’s around this time of year when the poorer teams in the league suddenly play beyond their normal abilities because there is nothing to lose.
Toughest stretch of games:
The Hawks will face their biggest test as a new team come the New Year, with a brutal January 3rd to 20th string of contests. Atlanta will open with a back-to-back against the improved Warriors and Derrick Rose-led Bulls, then will move on to play the new-look Nets, Pacers, Dwight and the Rockets, Grizzlies, Brooklyn once again – only this time in London and – to put the cherry on the deathly sundae – the Miami Heat. The Hawks’ performance in these match-ups could shift the direction of the rest of their season and give us an idea of just how good this team is, so these games are certainly ones to keep an eye on.
The Playoffs chase:
When the calendar flips to April and the Hawks (hopefully) cruise by their most manageable stretch of the year, Atlanta will have 8 more games to nab the best Playoffs seeding possible. 5 of these contests are at home, 3 on the road, split halfway between especially difficult opponents and ones the Hawks should beat. Atlanta will face off against Chicago, Cleveland, Indiana, Boston, Brooklyn, Miami, Charlotte and Milwaukee.
10/30 – Season opener in Dallas
11/1 – Home opener against the Raptors
11/19 – First match-up with the defending champion Miami Heat
12/2 – Head coach Mike Budenhozler’s return to San Antonio
1/16 – Contest against Brooklyn in London’s O2 Arena
1/20 – MLK Day bout against the Heat
2/14 to 2/16 – 2014 NBA All-Star Weekend in New Orleans
3/10 – Paul Millsap’s return to Utah