For average viewers of the Association, Christmas Day is NBA opening day. And most of the time, the Christmas Day slate of games rarely disappoints. However, this year is kind of the exception.
Prior to the season, the games looked great. Everything was great, with the exception of the NBA snubbing the Indiana Pacers of a game. But a couple months of injuries, overhype and underachieving later, the solid Christmas Day schedule has turned into a stale slate of games.
Still, the show must go on. Here is your Christmas Day NBA guide:
Chicago Bulls (10-16) vs Brooklyn Nets (9-18) – ESPN, 12: 00 p.m.
The Bulls are the definition of a struggling team right now. They’ve only managed to pickup three wins in their last 10 games. Brooklyn, on the other hand, has much deeper problems of their own. They’re on the edge of a disaster. They’ve lost Brook Lopez for the season and are a seven-game losing streak away from turning into “sellers” at the trade deadline. Expect sloppy, unmotivated basketball.
SCIC WATCHABLE RATING: 4
Oklahoma City Thunder (22-5) vs New York Knicks (9-18) – ABC, 2:30 p.m.
The Thunder and Knicks couldn’t be more different. Both teams are headed in the opposite direction of one another. Kevin Durant is quietly having another MVP quality-type season while Carmelo Anthony continues to be Carmelo Anthony – a great scorer, but lacks the ability to make his teammates better. To top things off, Melo is questionable for the game. People close to the situation believe he’s going to play, but if he doesn’t, this game has “meh” written all over it.
SCIC WATCHABLE RATING: 6 (ONLY BECAUSE OF KD)
Miami Heat (21-6) vs Los Angeles Lakers (13-15) – ABC, 5:00 p.m.
At least the Lakers are a little bit “funner” to watch without Kobe Bryant? Man, this game could get ugly fast. The Heat are off to their best start in franchise history and the Lakers are, well, not. If you aren’t watching for LeBron James and the Heat, then I really don’t know why you’re watching. You do know that there’s a 24-hour marathon of “A Christmas Story” that’s still on, right?
SCIC WATCHABLE RATING: 5
Houston Rockets (18-11) vs San Antonio Spurs (22-6) – ESPN, 8:00 p.m.
Now we’re getting somewhere – a game that could very well headline the Christmas Day slate, but is buried near the end of the night. Jeremy Lin returned on Monday for the Rockets and appears to be ready to go tonight. James Harden is eyeing a return against the Spurs, but nothing is official as of Christmas morning. Tony Parker missed two games earlier this week, but is back and ready to go. If Harden goes, this could go down as the best game of the night. Harden vs Parker….YES!
SCIC WATCHABLE RATING: 9
Los Angeles Clippers (20-9) vs Golden State Warriors – ESPN, 10:30 p.m.
This game features two of the most dynamic guards in the NBA – Steph Curry and Chris Paul. Anytime the two go head-to-head it’s almost a must-watch, and Christmas night is no exception. The last time these two teams played, the Clippers came away with a 126-115 win at home. The Warriors will be looking to return the favor – enough said. If you only watch one game on Christmas, it should to be this one.
SCIC WATCHABLE RATING: 10
Tags: Brooklyn Nets Chicago Bulls Golden State Warriors Houston Rockets Los Angeles Clippers Los Angeles Lakers Miami Heat NBA NBA Christmas Day New York Knicks Oklahoma City Thunder San Antonio Spurs