The NBA released its 2011–12 schedule today, though thanks to the ongoing lockout, there's no guarantee they'll actually, you know, play all these games. (On the NBA TV schedule release show this afternoon, host Matt Winer described today's release as "admittedly an optimistic exercise.") So what are the highlights of the Knicks season that may or may not actually happen?
• Well, this'll be fun: They open the season at the Garden on November 2 against LeBron James and the Heat. (Your other chance to boo the bejesus out of the Big Three in New York this year? Game No. 80, on April 15.)
• They'll host the defending champion Mavericks on February 19, and visit Dallas on March 6.
• They'll play on Christmas once again this year, hosting the Celtics at noon.
• With the Nets on track to move to Brooklyn for the 2012–13 season, the Knicks' final game in New Jersey would be on January 7. (The Nets' final regular-season game in New Jersey, by the way, would be on April 18, against the Bulls.)
• Carmelo Anthony returns to Denver on November 16, while the Nuggets visit New York on March 28.
• This year's Martin Luther King Jr. Day opponent is Sacramento. Game time is 1 p.m.
• And the Knicks — who not too long ago had dropped off the national TV schedule altogether — will appear on ABC, TNT, and ESPN a combined 22 times this year. They'll also appear on NBA TV seven times.