Philadelphia 76ers @ New York Knicks- 12:00 PM
This 76ers Knicks game should be a great start to the NBA game slate on Christmas Day. This will be an emotionally driven game full of energy from both sides. One marquee matchup to look out for is the battle of two young star big men in Kristaps Porzingis and Joel Embid. Both players are coming off of injuries that kept them sidelined for multiple games. Joel just returned to action this Saturday vs the Toronto Raptors where he played 23 minutes and put up 14 points and 8 rebounds to show for it. Meanwhile Kristaps returned to action on Thursday vs the Celtics and showed signs of rust, going 0 for 11 from the field and only scoring 1 point. Nevertheless each player has greatly improved this season from last. Kristaps and Joel are both under 25 years old, not even in their prime but are already all stars in the Eastern Conference.
Cleveland Cavaliers @ Golden State Warriors- 3:00 PM
This is what every NBA fan has been waiting for, the first time these teams will play since the finals matchup in which they have met for the past 3 years. Who says this is bad for the NBA? Who doesn’t want to watch debatable the best player of all time face against debatable the best team of all time? This is every NBA fans favorite present and we will get to watch this game once again on Christmas day. Even though there will likely be no Steph Curry, Draymond Green or Isaiah Thomas there will be LeBron James and Kevin Durant in tomorrows game who are the number 1 and 2 players in the NBA respectively.
Washington Wizards @ Boston Celtics- 5:30 PM
Even though Kyrie Irving doesn’t consider Christmas a holiday, he has gifted the Celtics with the most wins so far this NBA season with 27. He has no day off tomorrow as he will face John Wall and the Wizards. This will be one of Kyrie’s toughest matchup’s this season as John Wall may be the best two-way point guard in the game. This game will be a test for both teams and will give them a chance to prove who may be the biggest test to the Cleveland Cavaliers in the East. The other thing to look out for in this game is how the supporting cast are going to step up to help each of their star point guards. Some players to keep an eye out for are Al Horford, Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum of the Celtics. Then Bradley Beal, Otto Porter, and Kelly Oubre Jr of the Wizards.
Houston Rockets @ Oklahoma City Thunder- 8:00 PM
These are two teams that have been under a microscope of NBA fans for complete opposite reasons. The Oklahoma City Thunder have struggled for most of the year but may now be finally putting it together winning 4 straight. Meanwhile the Houston Rockets have been playing outstanding and are in first place in the difficult Western Conference but have lost their last 2 games. This is only the second time this year that the Rockets have lost consecutive games. Something else to look forward to is watching the first and second placed players in last years MVP race face off for the first time this year. Russell Westbrook and James Harden have continued there stellar play from last year so expect this game to be loaded with amazing plays and monstrous stat lines.
Minnesota Timberwolves @ Los Angelos Lakers- 10:30 PM
In the last game of the Christmas day slate, two young promising teams will face each other. The Los Angeles Lakers will be without the number 2 pick of last years draft; the well talked about rookie Lonzo Ball, as he is tending to a shoulder sprain. Though the Lakers are without Ball they have another rookie who is playing better than Ball right now, that is Kyle Kuzma. Kuzma has been playing great lately scoring over 20 in four of his last 5 games and posting a career high 38 in their win vs the Rockets on Wednesday Night. The Timberwolves have a top 3 duo under 25 years old in the NBA right now with Andrew Wiggins and Karl Anthony Towns. They also have Jimmy Butler who is also pretty good. Butler looks as if he will make the All Star game right now in the West, averaging 21 points 6 rebounds and 5 assists a game while leading this young Timberwolves team to 4th place in the West.
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Images Via: ClutchPoints.com USAtoday.com Worldnews.easybranches.com Sbnation.com Foxsports.com
Stats Via: ESPN.Com and Basket-reference.com