Despite the omnipresent mist of uncertainty shrouding the NBA’s planned resumption of the 2019-20 season at the end of July, fans were treated to a brief but important taste of optimism and joy on Friday when the schedule for all 22 teams headed to the Disney bubble was released. Something about seeing those team logos with dates and TV channels next to them gave us all a cozy feeling inside — now we’ll all keep our fingers tightly crossed that things go according to plan and an NBA champion is eventually crowned.
The schedule certainly changes the outlook for teams in Orlando, as some received significant jumps or drops in strength of schedule compared to their remaining set of games before the hiatus in mid-March. The Pelicans, 76ers and Celtics all face newly paved roads to the postseason, while the terrain for the Raptors, Heat and Trail Blazers has been laced with potholes. As a result, there were some shakeups in this week’s Power Rankings — though the Bucks, Lakers and Clippers remain at the top.