Posted: Wednesday November 15, 2006 10:03AM; Updated: Thursday November 16, 2006 11:21AM
Even on the road -- in this case, at Portland last season -- LeBron James garners plenty of fan support.
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Marty Burns will periodically answer questions from SI.com users in his mailbag.
Dates: Jan. 9-Jan. 20 (seven games in 12 days) Opponents: SAC, PHO, LAC, SEA, POR*, DEN, GS* Playoff teams from a year ago: 4 The skinny: Thanks to Disney on Ice taking over the Q, LeBron James will take his traveling road show West. Last season the Cavs went 1-5 on this trip before coming home and winning six straight.
Dates: Jan. 31-Feb. 11 (seven games in 12 days) Opponents: LAC, SEA, POR*, UTA, SAC, GS*, PHO Playoff teams from a year ago: 3 The skinny: This time it's the Disney ice show that sends the Bulls out West. The bad news is the schedule presents five playoff-caliber foes (including Utah and Golden State). The good news is the Bulls get out of the Windy City winter for nearly two weeks.
Dates: Dec. 26-Jan. 5 (seven games in 11 days) Opponents: GS, SAC*, POR, LAL, DEN, UTA*, MIN Playoff teams from a year ago: 3 The skinny: Yet another victim of Disney on Ice, the Sixers won't have long to celebrate Christmas at home. The compressed trip, including two sets of back-to-backs, will test the 31-year-old legs of Allen Iverson.
Dates: Feb. 2-Feb. 12 (seven games in 11 days) Opponents: BOS, TOR, NY, CLE*, PHI, IND, DET* Playoff teams from a year ago: 3 The skinny: Like the Lakers, their co-tenant at Staples, they have to bug out for the Grammys. With one less game and only two sets of back-to-backs, however, they won't have it quite as bad on their cross-country jaunt.
Dates: March 4-March 13 (six games in 10 days) Opponents: PHI, DAL, HOU, SA*, MEM, NO* Playoff teams from a year ago: 3 The skinny: After opening at Philly, they complete the Texas Triangle over a five-day span. Then they get one day to recover before a back-to-back at Memphis and New Orleans/Oklahoma City.
9. Trail Blazers
Dates: April 6-April 9 (three games in four days) Opponents: HOU, DAL*, SA Playoff teams from a year ago: 2 The skinny: The Blazers have a brutal six-game trip over nine days in December, but this one might actually be worse. Portland and Chicago are the only teams this season that play all three Texas powers in succession in a four-day span. Yikes!
Dates: Feb. 20-26 (five games in seven days) Opponents: SAC, PHO*, LAL, UTA*, HOU Playoff teams from a year ago: 3 The skinny: Five playoff-caliber teams in a seven-day stretch? Two back-to-backs with the second games at Phoenix and Utah? If the Celtics can manage to win one game on this cross-country trek, it will be a major accomplishment.