The Golden State Warriors will return to the court this evening to receive their championship rings and start the defense of their first NBA title in 40 years.
The new NBA season kicks off in Oakland tonight as the Warriors take on the New Orleans Pelicans at Oracle Arena at 7:30 p.m. The Warriors swept the Pelicans in four games in the first round of the NBA playoffs in April.
The Warriors led the NBA with a 67-15 record last season under first-year coach Steve Kerr, losing only twice at home. It was the best record in Warriors history.
This season is likely to be one of the last the Warriors play in Oakland, with the team slated to move to a new arena in San Francisco’s Mission Bay neighborhood in 2018. Construction on the new arena is expected to begin early next year.
Most of the team’s championship roster is returning this season, including NBA MVP Steph Curry, All-Star Klay Thompson and NBA Finals MVP Andre Iguodala.
Team officials are advising fans to arrive early tonight. The arena doors will open at 5:30 p.m. and parking gates will be open at 5 p.m.
Fans should be in their seats by 7:15 p.m. to catch the pre-game ceremony, where the Warriors players and coaches will receive their championship rings.
Those who can’t make the game even have the option of viewing it in virtual reality. The game and ring ceremony will be available in high-definition virtual reality using a Samsung Gear VR headset. Details about the virtual reality broadcast are available at www.nextvr.com/nba-tnt.
Tickets to see the game in actual reality are available at warriors.com but could be in short supply — the team has sold out its last 134 home games.
Scott Morris, Bay City News