AKRON, Ohio — Like it or not, the NBA’s in-season tournament is near.
For the Cavaliers, that means a visit to the Pacers on Friday, Nov. 3 for the first in-season tournament game in the history of both franchises. The league made the announcement on Tuesday, ahead of the full 2023-24 schedule, due out Thursday.
Along with the Pacers, the Cavs will face the other four members of their group, known as “East Group A.” That means a home game vs. the Pistons on Friday, Nov. 17, a road game vs. the 76ers on Tuesday, Nov. 21 and a road game vs. the Hawks on Nov. 28.
We assume this also means there will be games in between those dates — but those are the dates on the in-season tourney games.
At any rate, the Cavs-76ers tourney game will be televised by TNT, with all the others being broadcast locally.
As for the tournament overall, each Friday during the tourney will feature a doubleheader on ESPN, with TNT to broadcast doubleheaders on Tuesday.
Teams with the best records from each group will advance to the quarterfinals, slated for Dec. 4 and 5. The semifinals will be held on Dec. 7, with the “championship” on Dec. 9. The semifinals and finals will be held in Las Vegas.
Per the NBA release:
“Each of the 22 teams that do not advance to the Quarterfinals of the In-Season Tournament will be assigned two regular-season games (one home game and one away game) that will be played on Wednesday, Dec. 6 and Friday, Dec. 8. A formulaic approach will determine the matchups for these 22 games using the Group Play standings in each conference (fifth through 15th).
“Two of the 22 games will be scheduled cross-conference because there will be an odd number of teams in each conference that do not advance to the Quarterfinals. These cross-conference games will be scheduled between bottom-finishing teams in Group Play subject to travel constraints, and no team will play more than one of its two games cross-conference. The other 20 games will be scheduled within conference featuring teams that are otherwise scheduled to play each other three times over the course of the season wherever possible.
“The losing teams in the Quarterfinals in each conference will play each other in a regular-season game on Dec. 8.”