The Magic announced their eight-game preseason schedule Thursday, highlighted by a game against Israeli team Maccabi Haifa on October 23. The schedule will feature four road games and four games at the Amway Center.
That is, of course, if the NBA and its players can agree to a collective bagaining agreement that would end the lockout put in place July 1. At this point, nobody is optimistic that will occur.
Still, now we know the first game the Magic could possibly lose to this lockout will be October 9 against the Grizzlies. Tip off is scheduled for 6 p.m. But of course, who knows if the season will actually take place.
The home schedule also features games against the Cavaliers and the Pistons. Orlando will head on the road to take on Miami, Indiana, New Orleans and San Antonio.
The feature game is definitely Orlando’s matchup with Israel’s Maccabi Haifa. Haifa finished 8-19 and ninth of 10 teams in the Israeli SuperLeague last year. The team features former New Jersey Net Sean Williams. The team made a trip to the U.S. last year to play the Nets.
Haifa is owned by Jeffrey Rose of Aventura, Florida. Obviously, he is very excited about bringing his team close to home. Haifa is also often featured in Sun Sports’ Inside Israeli Basketball. For sure, Maccabi Haifa has a firm presence in the U.S.
“We are excited to have Maccabi Haifa play such a prestigious team such as the Orlando Magic,” Rosen said on the team’s Web site. “Maccabi Haifa continues to build its brand globally and games against high quality NBA opponents broaden our exposure.”
Orlando has some experience playing international teams. The Magic previously played then-Euroleague champions Maccabi Tel Aviv in 2004 during Dwight Howard’s rookie campaign. The team also played then-Euroleague champion CSKA Moscow in 2008. Orlando won both games.
In addition to playing foreign teams, Orlando will travel to London for the second time in franchise history to play two regular season games against New Jersey.
Of course, this is all assuming there is a season. And, frankly, who knows if that will happen.
The full preseason schedule is below:
10/9 vs. Memphis, 6 p.m.
10/11 @ Miami, 7:30 p.m.
10/13 vs. Cleveland, 7 p.m.
10/15 @ Indiana, 7 p.m.
10/18 @ New Orleans, 8 p.m.
10/20 @ San Antonio, 8:30 p.m.
10/23 vs. Maccabi Haifa, 6 p.m.
10/27 vs. Detroit, 7 p.m.
Photo via DayLife.com.