Times Colonist

Raptors will open their pre-season at Charlotte


The new-look Toronto Raptors will open their three-game NBA pre-season in Charlotte.

The Raptors are on the road against the Hornets on Dec. 12 and 14, then face the Miami Heat in a “home” game on

Dec. 18 to round out their threegame pre-season.

Due to Canada’s restrictio­ns around COVID-19, the Raptors are playing their home games for at least part of the season at Amalie Arena in Tampa, Florida.

The Raptors made some key changes in recent days, signing New Zealand-born Aussie centre Aron Baynes after losing Marc Gasol and Serge Ibaka in free agency. Other newcomers include rookie guards Malachi Flynn and Jalen Harris, who were selected No. 29 and 59 in the recent NBA draft.

The regular season tips off on Dec. 22. It will include just 72 games per team this season rather than 82, and the schedule is being released in two segments. The first half, covering Dec. 22 to March 4, will be released in the coming days, while the second half — March 11 to May 16 — will be released toward the end of the first half.

Releasing the schedule in two parts allows the league to reschedule games postponed due to COVID-19.

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