HOUSTON (FOX 26) - The Houston Rockets today announced their schedule for the 2017 preseason and the 2017-18 regular season. Last season, the Rockets posted the third-best record in the NBA at 55-27 and advanced to the Western Conference Semifinals. In June, Houston added nine-time All-Star Chris Paul to pair up with James Harden, who was the only unanimous First Team All-NBA selection in 2016-17.
AT&T SportsNet will broadcast 70 of the Rockets 82 regular season games, in addition to two preseason contests. The Rockets are scheduled to appear on national TV a total of 28 times this season (ABC: 6; ESPN: 10; TNT: 12).
The five-game preseason opens on Tuesday, Oct. 3 against the Oklahoma City Thunder at the BOK Center in Tulsa, Okla. and concludes at home against the San Antonio Spurs on Friday, Oct. 13. For the second straight year, the Rockets will host the Shanghai Sharks of the Chinese Basketball Association at Toyota Center on Thursday, Oct. 5.
Seven of the Rockets first 10 games to start the regular season are on the road, including the opener at the Golden State Warriors on Tuesday, Oct. 17. The Rockets first home game is on Saturday, Oct. 21 against the Dallas Mavericks. This marks the earliest start to an NBA regular season since 1980-81.
From Nov. 5 through Dec. 22, the Rockets will play 15 of 21 games at Toyota Center, capped off a seven-game homestand over a span of 12 days. That culminates with Paul’s first matchup against his former team, the Los Angeles Clippers, on Friday, Dec. 22. The last time the Rockets played seven straight home games was in March of 2013.
For the second time in three seasons, and the 10th time in franchise history, the Rockets will play on Christmas Day, at Oklahoma City on Monday, Dec. 25. That begins a stretch where Houston will play eight of 11 games on the road through Jan. 15.
Following a run of five of seven games at home from Jan. 18-30, the Rockets will play 15 of 22 on the road from Feb. 1 through March 20. That includes both of Houston’s season-long four-game road trips (Feb. 1-7 and March 6-11).
The Rockets will play eight of nine games at home from March 22 through Apr. 7 before finishing the regular season with back-to-back road games against the Los Angeles Lakers on Tuesday, April 10 and the Sacramento Kings on Wednesday, April 11.
Houston will play 14 sets of back-to-back games this season, down from 16 in 2016-17 and a league-high tying 20 in 2015-16. The Rockets only have six sets of back-to-back from October through January, but eight over the final three months of the season, including four in March. Houston had 10 sets of back-to-back games last December and January, but just four over the final three months.
The Rockets will play 11 games on Monday (7 home), 10 on Tuesday (4 home), 15 on Wednesday (6 home), 10 on Thursday (six home), 11 on Friday (5 home), 14 on Saturday (8 home), and 11 on Sunday (5 home).
Over the course of the season, the Rockets will face each NBA team at least once at home and once on the road, including Western Conference opponents twice both home and away, except for the following: Denver (2 home, 1 road), Golden State (2 home, 1 road), Oklahoma City (1 home, 2 road), and Sacramento (1 home, 2 road).