- The Washington Times - Wednesday, August 9, 2017

After several teams benched star players in marquee, nationally televised matchups last season, the NBA issued a memo to teams this week that lays out schedule changes designed to build more rest into the season.

These changes include stretching the season out a week by opening on Oct. 17 instead of Oct. 25, as well as protecting games which will be nationally televised by ensuring teams aren’t playing on back-to-back nights.

Back-to-backs as a whole will see a reduction from 16.3 per team to 14.9, with the league also making efforts to reduce stretches of five games in seven nights and single-game road trips.

In addition, stretches of four games in five days and 18 games in 30 days will be completely eliminated in 2017-18, and more games will be played on weekends.

According to ESPN’s Brian Windhorst, the schedule should be finalized by the end of this week, with the player’s union playing a part in its formation for the first time to identify any problematic stretches.

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