SPORTS

Washington Wizards schedule opens Dec. 26 against New Jersey

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Washington Wizards fans will get the Christmas present they've waited for all summer and fall one day late.

John Wall and the Wizards will open the season the day after Christmas. (Photo: Associated Press)

The lockout-shortened Wizards season will begin on Dec. 26, when the Wizards host the New Jersey Nets at Verizon Center. It kicks off a 66-game season, which was scheduled to begin in early November, that has been stifled by the months-long NBA lockout.

"We're excited to have our schedule and for our fans to know when they will be able to see this young, athletic team back in a competitive environment," said Wizards President Ernie Grunfeld said in a statement.

The Wizards' December schedule then takes the team on the road to Atlanta and Milwaukee before playing the Boston Celtics at home on New Year's Day.

Their longest road trip of the year, a five-game, nine-day trip in February, will take the Wizards to Detroit, Portland, Los Angeles, Utah and Phoenix. They'll also play five road games in seven days between March 12 and 18.

The Dallas Mavericks, the defending NBA champions, will not make an appearance in Washington. However, LeBron James and the defending Eastern Conference champion Miami Heat will come to Verizon Center on Feb. 10 and April 26.

Check out the full schedule on the Wizards' website.

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