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Sixers release preseason schedule

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Philadelphia 76ers v Boston Celtics - Game Five Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

The Sixers have officially released their 2018 preseason schedule. From the Sixers press release:

PHILADELPHIA – AUG. 23, 2018 – The Philadelphia 76ers announced today the team’s preseason schedule in advance of the 2018-19 NBA season. The 76ers will tip off the preseason on Friday, Sept. 28 with a tilt against the Australian professional team Melbourne United (NBL) at 7 p.m. ET at The Center.

Melbourne, which captured the 2017-18 NBL title in March, is one of five Australian teams scheduled to play seven games against NBA opponents this coming preseason. Oklahoma City hosted Melbourne United during the 2017 preseason, a game which the Thunder won, 86-85.

The 76ers will host the Orlando Magic three days after the Melbourne contest on Monday, Oct. 1, at 7 p.m. ET in the final scheduled preseason game in Philadelphia.

Four days later as part of NBA China Games 2018, Philadelphia will play in China for the first time in franchise history, taking on the Dallas Mavericks on Friday, Oct. 5 at 7:30 a.m. ET at Mercedes-Benz Arena in Shanghai and Monday, Oct. 8 at 8 a.m. ET at Shenzhen Universiade Center in Shenzhen.

In addition to the two matchups between Philadelphia and Dallas, NBA China Games 2018 will feature a variety of fan activities, including the seventh annual NBA Fan Day on Thursday, Oct. 4 in Shanghai, which will provide thousands of fans with the opportunity to participate in on-court games and watch the Mavericks and 76ers conduct basketball activities and skills competitions. The league and its partners will also conduct a series of NBA Cares community outreach events in Shanghai and Shenzhen.

The two home games on Sept. 28 and Oct. 1 will be broadcast by one of NBC Sports Philadelphia’s two networks and 97.5 The Fanatic. Broadcast information for NBA China Games 2018 will be announced at a later date.

Philadelphia 76ers

So there you have it: four preseason games, two in Philadelphia and two in China. I’m somewhat excited for the game against Melbourne United, I guess, just to see something different in terms of players and style. The one fella’ on their squad, Craig Moller, is not only a professional basketball player but also briefly played Australian rules football on a professional level. He’s the neanderthal-looking guy with dreadlocks:

NBL Rd 14 - Perth v Melbourne Photo by Paul Kane/Getty Images

As for the preseason games against rival NBA teams, the slate is disappointing. I’d much rather prefer at least one of the Dallas games in Philly, so we could get an in-person look at Luka Doncic. The idea of seeing Mo Bamba and the Magic isn’t all that appealing for me. There’s plenty of tall, long physical specimens in this league, and the Sixers have two of them (Ben & Jo), so Bamba and his freakish wingspan just don’t get me in the arena.

Regardless of the slightly disappointing preseason schedule, it’s exciting to be getting closer to real basketball action. It’s been 106 days since the Sixers last played a basketball game (not including Summer League)! As of the moment I’m typing this sentence, it is 36 days, 6 hours, 43 minutes and 37 seconds until the first preseason game. But who’s counting?