The New Jersey Nets’ move to Brooklyn has resulted in a dramatic increase in appearances on one of the NBA’s three broadcasters.
ESPN is scheduled to televise nine Brooklyn Nets games during the 2012-13 NBA regular season, according to the national television schedule released Thursday. The nine appearances is one short of the maximum, and matches the number of ESPN appearances for the Celtics, Mavericks and Spurs.
For some perspective, the Nets were scheduled for the same number of appearances on ESPN during the 2003-04 season — when the franchise was coming off of a second straight appearance in the NBA Finals.
Beyond the Nets, ESPN is set to feature the usual suspects during the 2012-13 season. The Heat, Thunder, Lakers, Knicks, Clippers and Bulls will each make the maximum ten appearances on the network, followed by the previously mentioned Nets, Celtics, Mavericks and Spurs with nine each.
In a testament to how far the Celtics/Lakers rivalry has fallen, the teams’ meeting in Los Angeles will air on ESPN February 20 at 10:30 PM ET. In previous years, the teams would play one game each season in the ABC Sunday afternoon window.
Because ESPN televises more games than ABC or TNT, it should not surprising that several of the lesser NBA lights are scheduled for appearances. The Pistons, for example, are scheduled for two appearances — including a head-to-head matchup with the Wizards.
(Schedule information from ESPN Media Zone)