The NBA released its 2017-18 schedule on Monday making it clear the Los Angeles Lakers and Lonzo Ball will be featured heavily.

The Lakers will feature in 35 nationally televised games as their number two picks from back-to-back drafts in Brandon Ingram and Lonzo Ball will battle for victory. They will open the regular season on October 19th vs the Los Angeles Clippers led by Blake Griffin.

Los Angeles have several notable games starting against longtime rivals the Boston Celtics on November 8th followed by a showdown against the Philadelphia 76ers and top draft pick Markelle Fultz on November 15th. Fans will also tune in to watch the first head to head featuring De’Aaron Fox vs Lonzo Ball on November 22nd. Fans of both teams are probably hoping this reignites the rivalry that once featured Shaquille O’Neal, Kobe Bryant, and Chris Webber.

The Golden State Warriors roll into Staples Center on November 29th. Ball and Ingram vs. Steph Curry and Kevin Durant will draw major attention and comparisons between the duos.

LeBron James will be waiting in Cleveland for a matchup on December 14th. Will LeBron leave the Cavaliers for the Lakers in the offseason? Only he knows, but the rumors will be swirling around this match up.

Once again the Lakers are featured on Christmas Day going up against the new look Minnesota Timberwolves and Jimmy Butler.

Maybe the most intriguing game of the schedule is when Russell Westbrook and Paul George visit LA on January 3rd with the Thunder. Much has been made of George’s affection for the Lakers and Kobe Bryant so he’ll walk into more cheers than boos. Westbrook will as well considering he’s a former Bruin and from California. Both of their contracts are up at the end of the season and will certainly make for some interesting drama considering LeBron’s is up as well.

The Lakers close out the season against the Clippers on April 11th. Starting the season with a plethora of nationally televised games shows that Adam Silver and the league want to take full advantage of the madness Lonzo caused at the Las Vegas Summer League. Comparing the Lakers to another young team like the 76ers who only have 23 games scheduled shows how much the NBA believes in the star power of Ball. The Lakers have as many nationally scheduled games as contenders Golden State (43), Cleveland (39), and Boston (35) which tells us the spotlight shines bright in LA once again.

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