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Mavs-Thunder for a pair in preseason?

The expectation is that teams will play two preseason games against one nearby opponent, one at home and one away.

With the proximity of San Antonio and Houston, it would seem the Spurs and Rockets will hook up, which would then make perfect sense for the Dallas Mavericks and Oklahoma City Thunder -- separated by a three-hour stretch of I-35 -- to become preseason partners.

The clubs were supposed to meet in the preseason in Dallas on Oct. 16.

Their next meeting will be the first since the Mavs ousted Kevin Durant and the Thunder from the Western Conference finals in five games.

The regular season is expected to start on Christmas Day with the Mavs playing host to the Miami Heat. Training camps and the free agency period are expected to open on Dec. 9. The tentative labor agreement must still be finalized and ratified by the owners and players, which could happen late in the week.