Sacramento Kings

Kings’ second season at Golden 1 Center to blast off with visit from Rockets

Kings guard Buddy Hield, left, defends the Houston Rockets guard James Harden at Golden 1 Center on April 9. The Kings will host the Rockets on Oct. 18 to open the 2017-18 season.
Kings guard Buddy Hield, left, defends the Houston Rockets guard James Harden at Golden 1 Center on April 9. The Kings will host the Rockets on Oct. 18 to open the 2017-18 season. hamezcua@sacbee.com

The young Kings will open their second season in Golden 1 Center on Wednesday, Oct. 18, against a formidable opponent: the Houston Rockets.

Most home games will once again tip off at 7 p.m., 30 minutes earlier than a year ago. The start time was moved to 7:30 due to concerns regarding parking, public transportation and traffic flow during the downtown arena’s inaugural season.

Other key facts about the schedule:

▪ The Kings will play 12 nationally televised games, beginning with TNT broadcast of the Oct. 26 visit by the New Orleans Pelicans and DeMarcus Cousins’ first appearance in Sacramento since he was traded in February.

▪ ESPN will televise three home games, beginning with the Los Angeles Lakers on Nov. 22. The network also will show visits by the NBA champion Golden State Warriors (Feb. 2) and Portland Trail Blazers (Feb. 9).

▪ After hosting Chris Paul, James Harden and the Rockets on opening night, the Kings play 20 of the ensuing 32 games on the road.

▪ With the league starting the season eight days earlier than a year ago to allow for more recovery time between games, the Kings have two fewer back-to-back outings and will not play four games in five nights, a scenario that occurred seven times last season.

Single-game tickets go on sale in September, but fans can secure seats to select games by signing up for packages on the Kings’ website.

Ailene Voisin: 916-321-1208, @ailene_voisin

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