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NBA Schedule: Top Five Must-See Matchups

By Erik Lambert

Nov 11, 2013; Chicago, IL, USA; Cleveland Cavaliers point guard Kyrie Irving (2) dribbles the ball as Chicago Bulls point guard Derrick Rose (1) defends during the second half at the United Center. The Bulls won 96-81. Mandatory Credit: Rob Grabowski-USA TODAY Sports

The storylines are increasing every day.  Here are five of the NBA schedule matchups that fans can’t afford to miss.

Cleveland Cavaliers vs. Chicago Bulls:  Derrick Rose welcomes Kevin Love

The Eastern Conference is looking very top heavy for the 2014-2015 season with two primary powers at the top.  Of course there is the newly formed Cleveland Cavaliers with LeBron James and now Kevin Love.  Their great foil will be the Chicago Bulls, who welcome back Derrick Rose and have put together a much deeper, more offensively minded roster to compliment their league-best defense.  This is a matchup fans are going to see plenty of.

San Antonio Spurs vs. Cleveland Cavaliers:  LeBron James seeks revenge

Every so often a it’s not a team but a single player who wages war against an opponent.  For LeBron James, there is no question that is the San Antonio Spurs.  He has now lost two NBA Finals series against the Western Conference powerhouse.  One might say his latest disappointment last May compelled him to leave Miami in order to form a new army in Cleveland to slay his old foe.  He will be anxious to put it to the test.

Cleveland Cavaliers vs. Minnesota Timberwolves:  Andrew Wiggins mystery

Sensing a trend yet?  Safe to say the star power of James is a draw but so are the plot devices he’s left in his wake.  Most thought the Minnesota Timberwolves would shrink into obscurity after losing Kevin Love.  Yet through some intriguing maneuvers they’ve put together a very young but highly skilled roster, centered around rookie Andrew Wiggins.  He, along with underappreciated forward Thaddeus Young and point guard Ricky Rubio will be anxious to show Love they’ll be just fine without him.

Houston Rockets vs. Portland Trail Blazers:  Trevor Ariza effect

Arguably there was no more thrilling series in the NBA playoffs last season than the six-game thriller staged by the Houston Rockets and Portland Trail Blazers, ending with the heart-stopping buzzer beater by Damian Lillard.  Houston clearly is out for revenge, and hopes its off-season addition of Trevor Ariza will give their defense the boost it needs to overcome what Portland did to them.

Miami Heat vs. Cleveland Cavaliers:  Big Three reunion

LeBron James is becoming a veteran at leaving hard feelings in his wake.  There is no question the Miami Heat fans feel it just as the Cavaliers did four years ago.  They will be itching to see their remade roster go toe-to-toe with their former hero, while Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade hope to prove they weren’t as over-the-hill as was implied when James left.