2013-14 NBA schedule release: Wizards only have one national TV game

Brad Mills-US PRESSWIRE

Despite renewed optimism and the hopes of a playoff push, the Washington Wizards only got one nationally-televised game this season.

The last time the Washington Wizards had a game televised on ESPN, ABC or TNT, it was Thanksgiving 2010, John Wall's rookie year. There, the Wizards were blown out by the Atlanta Hawks in the first game of a doubleheader.

I figured the Wizards would perhaps earn more national respect given that they are pushing for the playoffs and finished last season strong. Alas, I was wrong. The Wizards will only get one national TV game: a February 7 ESPN contest at home against Kyrie Irving and the Cleveland Cavaliers. Other teams with just one national TV game: luminaries such as the Milwaukee Bucks, Phoenix Suns, Orlando Magic and Sacramento Kings. Only three teams (Philadelphia, Charlotte, Toronto) were shut out entirely. Here's the full list.

(Note: the Wizards are on NBATV five times -- December 2 vs. Orlando, December 9 vs. Denver, December 27 at Minnesota, January 13 at Chicago and April 12 vs. Milwaukee -- but I don't consider those true national TV games).

It should be noted that if the Wizards fare well, they could have games flexed into late-season spots. The Wizards were slated to be on national TV against the Pistons last February, but the game was removed in light of the Heat's winning streak.

However, it's surprising to see just one game end up on one of the three big networks. Other young, dormant teams making a playoff push such as the Timberwolves (five games), Cavaliers (four), Pelicans (four) and Pistons (two) have more games on national television.

It's a silly thing to whine about, but hey, let's whine.

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