And he expects Lakers fans to warm up to James if the Lakers are playing meaningful games in May and June after missing the playoffs the last six seasons and failing to win a playoff game since 2012.
Leonard will return to Toronto on December 11 as the Clippers visit the Raptors. Terry Rozier and the Charlotte Hornets head to Boston on December 22, while Marcus Morris visits on November 1 and March 18.
The Lakers' roster should be much improved this season after they acquired Anthony Davis from the New Orleans Pelicans in exchange for Lonzo Ball, Josh Hart, Brandon Ingram and three first-round picks this offseason.
The first 10 games in particular will be especially hard, considering superstar forward Paul George may not be available to play any of them. Houston Rockets guard Russell Westbrook will play the Thunder in Oklahoma City on January 9.
It is now official: LeBron James, Anthony Davis and the Lakers will open their 82-game National Basketball Association campaign against Kawhi Leonard and Paul George in a Clippers home game at Staples Center on October 22. One that many players don't necessarily make in their second or third seasons.
In all, there were 57 games on national television starting at 10:30 p.m. last season.
Back-to-backs are at an all-time low for the fifth season in a row - an average of 12.4 per team, one fewer than last season. That season-opening game will be considered a road contest for the Lakers.
The All-Star break will begin February 14, with the 2020 All-Star Game scheduled for February 16 in Chicago. The most hard matchup of the month figures to be the Clippers' road game against the Philadelphia 76ers on February 11. Every team will have at least seven days off. Lakers come to Boston on January 20, Martin Luther King Day, which is always a special occasion in the NBA.Breaking tradition, the Celtics will not play at home on the afternoon of Super Bowl Sunday.
April 15, 2020, will mark the final day of the regular season, which will feature 13 games.