The Sixers better get ready for their closeup.
The NBA announced a limited release of the upcoming 2018-19 schedule on Wednesday and the Sixers will be featured in four national television games for their season opener, home opener, Christmas Day and Martin Luther King Day.
The team won’t have to wait long to see its top rival as the Sixers will travel to face the Boston Celtics in a season-opening matchup on Oct. 16 (8 p.m./TNT). The Sixers clashed with the Celtics 11 times last season between the preseason, regular season and postseason and walked away with just two wins.
The Sixers will get back to business in front of fans at the Wells Fargo Center when they host the Chicago Bulls in their home opener on Oct. 18 (8 p.m./TNT). The Sixers haven’t won a home opener since the 2013-14 season, Brett Brown’s first campaign as head coach.
The Sixers are also part of the league’s prized Christmas Day lineup for the second consecutive season. In their first appearance on the holiday in 17 years a season ago, they were able to notch a 105-98 win over the New York Knicks at Madison Square Garden to snap a five-game skid. They'll take on the Celtics again in Boston, at 5:30 p.m. on ABC.
Martin Luther King Day has become a major event for the NBA as the league uses its platform to continue spreading the message of the civil rights pioneer. The Sixers will host the Houston Rockets on Jan. 21 in an MLK Day tilt (8 p.m./TNT). The team has won two straight games on the holiday, including a 117-111 home victory over the Toronto Raptors last season.
Those matchups should only be the beginning of a large amount of national television appearances for the Sixers. In the 2017-18 regular season, the team played in 15 nationally televised games.
Fresh off a 52-win season and a first-round playoff series victory, expect to see plenty more of the Sixers in primetime during 2018-19.