If all goes well, the NBA lockout will end sometime soon. If all doesn't go well, NBA TV will still begin playing current basketball in January when the 2012 NBA Development League Showcase gets underway.
The D-League Showcase has become the biggest event for the NBA's official minor league and, in what I believe is a new development this year, NBA TV will show half of the games live on television. Along with a plethora of NBA and overseas scouts looking for an influx of new blood, the Showcase also draws quite a bit of media attention (even your's truly plans to be in attendance at the Reno Events Center!).
It's really difficult to guess what rosters will look like in two months, but as of right now, the D-League PR staff has decided these are the intriguing match-ups:
- The Los Angeles D-Fenders, led by point guard Jamaal Tinsley, the top overall selection in the 2011 NBA D-League Draft, take on guard JamesOn Curry and the Springfield Armor in a game carried by NBA TV (Jan. 9, 12:45 p.m. PT).
The Bakersfield Jam and newly-acquired veteran Renaldo Major will face the Fort Wayne Mad Ants and Walker Russell (Jan. 9, 3:30 p.m. PT).
The Austin Toros and their returning scoring/rebounding leader Leo Lyons battle the BayHawks on NBA TV (Jan. 10, 12:45 p.m. PT).
The Maine Red Claws and collegiate standouts Paul Harris (Syracuse) and Durrell Summers (Michigan State) will take on the Sioux Falls Skyforce (Jan. 10, 10 a.m. PT)
The hometown Reno Bighorns and recently acquired guard Blake Ahearn, one of the league's top returning scorers, compete against the defending champion Iowa Energy (Jan. 11, 7 p.m. PT).
The full schedule follows below.
2012 NBA D-League Showcase Schedule (all game times local)
Date Game Tip-Off Air Time
Jan. 9 Idaho Stampede @ Erie BayHawks 10 a.m. NBA TV (Live 1 p.m. ET)
Jan. 9 Springfield Armor @ Los Angeles D-Fenders 12:45 p.m. NBA TV (Live 3:45 p.m. ET)
Jan. 9 Ft. Wayne Mad Ants @ Bakersfield Jam 3:30 p.m.*
Jan. 9 Reno BigHorns @ Rio Grande Valley Vipers 7 p.m.*
Jan. 10 Maine Red Claws @ Sioux Falls Skyforce 10 a.m. NBA TV (Live 1 p.m. ET)
Jan. 10 Erie BayHawks @ Austin Toros 12:45 p.m. NBA TV (Live 3:45 p.m. ET)
Jan. 10 Texas Legends @ Tulsa 66ers 3:30 p.m.+
Jan. 10 Dakota Wizards @ Canton Charge 7 p.m.+
Jan. 11 Los Angeles D-Fenders @ Maine Red Claws 10 a.m. NBA TV (Live 1 p.m. ET)
Jan. 11 Bakersfield Jam @ Idaho Stampede 12:45 p.m. NBA TV (Live 3:45 p.m. ET)
Jan. 11 Sioux Falls Skyforce @ Texas Legends 3:30 p.m.#
Jan. 11 Iowa Energy @ Reno BigHorns 7 p.m.#
Jan. 12 Austin Toros @ Dakota Wizards 10 a.m. NBA TV (Live 1 p.m. ET)
Jan. 12 Tulsa 66ers @ Ft. Wayne Mad Ants 12:45 p.m. NBA TV (Live 3:45 p.m. ET)
Jan. 12 Rio Grande Valley Vipers @ Springfield Armor 3:30 p.m.^
Jan. 12 Canton Charge @ Iowa Energy 7 p.m.^
* One of these two games will be shown on NBA TV on Jan. 10 (11.a.m. ET)
+ One of these two games will be shown on NBA TV on Jan. 11 (11.a.m. ET)
# One of these two games will be shown on NBA TV on Jan. 12 (11 a.m. ET)
^ One of these two games will be shown on NBA TV on Jan. 13 (1 p.m. ET)