Cavaliers to get 31 games on TV
CLEVELAND (AP) -- It used to be when Carlos Boozer took the floor at Gund Arena, fans would cheer him on with drawn-out chants of "Booz."
When the power forward returns to Cleveland wearing a Utah Jazz uniform, the boos will likely have a less-friendly tone.
Boozer stunned the Cavaliers and Cleveland fans when he signed with Utah last week after what the Cavs say was an oral agreement that he'd stay in Cleveland. Boozer has denied he promised to sign a long-term deal with the Cavaliers after they declined to pick up a one-year option on his contract.
The March 15 Utah matchup is one of 82 games on the Cavaliers' 2004-05 schedule released Monday.
The game versus the Jazz isn't scheduled to be broadcast on national television, but the Cavaliers announced Monday that a franchise record 31 games in the 2004-05 season would be shown to national audiences.
The Cavaliers open the 82-game season against the Indiana Pacers Nov. 3 at Gund Arena, the first time in three years Cleveland begins the season at home. The Cavs then head to Miami to take on Shaquille O'Neal and the Heat on Nov. 4.
The Los Angeles Lakers come to Cleveland Feb. 13, about a month after the Cavaliers play the Lakers on the West Coast Jan. 13.
The Cavaliers have said they expect to make the playoffs this season after James, the NBA's 2004 Rookie of the Year, helped the team more than double its win total last season as it narrowly missed the postseason.
The Cavaliers, who finished 35-47, experienced the largest single-season attendance increase in NBA history for a team not moving to a new arena. Home attendance rose to an average 18,288 per game, up from 11,497 during the 2002-03 season.