Get ready to boo Bosh

RYAN WOLSTAT, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 11:23 PM ET

It might be a long wait for the many Raptors fans eager to give a couple of not so dearly departed ex-Raptors an unwelcome reception.

The NBA revealed its 2010-11 schedule Tuesday and though the campaign, the 16th for the Raptors, will see the squad travel to London, England, overall, it is not as gruelling a slate as usual.

The team will make two trips to Miami before Chris Bosh makes his return to the ACC on

Feb. 16. The loafing Hedo Turkoglu will hear the boos while native son Steve Nash hears the applause Feb. 25, though there is a chance Turkoglu suits up for a pre-season tilt in Toronto in October.

January will be the busiest month of the season for Toronto (17 games), Wednesday (23) and Friday (21) will be the heaviest days, while the Raptors will not suit up at all on Thursdays.

Unfortunately for a team that appears to be heading for the high lottery, the schedule looks a little easier than the recent ones that have hurt stronger editions. Back-to-back games are limited and though two road trips will be five gamers, it is not a particularly imposing road schedule.

Here’s a look at some of the key dates for both the Raptors and the NBA in general next season:

Oct. 27 vs. New York Knicks

In its earliest opener ever, Toronto meets Amare Stoudemire’s Knicks in what should be a track meet, since the Raptors have said they plan to play a running style.

Nov. 12/13

Fans looking to travel to Florida will be able to empty their lungs for a twin bill against first the Orlando Magic and Vince Carter and then against Chris Bosh and his South Beach crew.

Nov. 21

Eastern Conference champion Boston, now with the double O’Neals (Shaquille and Jermaine) joining the incumbent Big Four of Rajon Rondo, Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen pay a visit.

Dec. 19

Kobe Bryant and the back-to-back champion L.A. Lakers make their annual stop in Toronto.

Feb. 16 vs. Miami

The return of some guy named Bosh and a couple of decent supporting pieces. Toronto will get a first look at one of the most imposing trios one sporting franchise has ever put on the same side.

Feb. 25 vs. Phoenix

Though he did not contribute even a 100th of what Bosh or Vince Carter did, expect Hedo Turkoglu to be booed as passionately as any Raptors opponent has ever been.

March 4/5

In the first NBA regular-season games in Europe, the Raptors will play the New Jersey Nets twice in London, England.

Dec. 1st and 3rd

ACC will welcome Washington and likely rookie of the year John Wall and then MVP contender Kevin Durant’s Oklahoma City Thunder in a three-day span. Two players well worth the price of admission.

April 13

Here’s a contrast for the last game of the season. The Miami Heat come in possibly looking for an all-time single-season wins record. The Raptors ... might be angling for the league’s worst record.

Other NBA highlights

Oct. 26 Miami at Boston

The East’s top two teams meet up looking to fire the first salvo in what should be a pretty good battle all season.

Oct. 27 Portland at L.A.C.

The Clippers on national TV? It’s not a mirage, super rookie Blake Griffin finally makes his home debut — a year late — for the cursed Clippers on ESPN.

Dec. 2 Heat at Cavaliers

Perhaps the game of the season, LeBron James returns to Cleveland for the first time. Finally a North American sporting event will feel like a European or South American soccer match. Watch for flying batteries, LeBron.

Jan. 5 Lakers at Suns

Western Conference finals rematch sees a revamped and possibly even more explosive offensively Phoenix side look to put a dent in the league’s most fearsome defenders.

Feb. 10 Lakers at Celtics

The NBA Final was one of the most entertaining in years. While this game won’t possibly have the same feel, it should still be a good one between two squads and franchises that hate, yet, respect each other.


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