Every year, select NBA teams play on Christmas day. How this tradition came to be is not known to many. And so are the reasons behind those games.
Well, here’s a look into the NBA Christmas games tradition.
Purpose of the NBA Christmas games
Christmas is a time for merrymaking. It started in 1947 wherein the Association puts together teams with some of the best players.
Although, the games are like a rematch of the previous season’s playoffs or finals game. The emphasis is on desirable matchups for national viewership.
NBA tries to strike a balance between team performance and market size. Not necessarily for the ticket sales, but what the fans would want to see on Christmas day.
That’s according to NBA senior vice president of broadcasting, Tom Carelli. The fans and the NBA’s great storylines are what the games are for.
Playing the NBA’s Santa Claus, Carelli selects the Christmas agenda. Priority games are created—they are an opportunity for more people to get to watch each game.
Siphoning the new blood
Christmas day games feature both established and new NBA players.
The staples will be playing including LeBron James, Stephen Curry (who missed last year’s games due to an ankle injury), Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook, James Harden, and Kyrie Irving.
And then, there are Christmas day rookies such as Giannis Antetokounmpo, Damian Lillard, CJ McCollum, Lonzo Ball, and Donovan Mitchell. Zion Williamson will be also debuting this year.
Participating in the festivities
Despite the criticisms and complaints that the games take away precious time of these players that should’ve been spent with families on Christmas day, coaches and players see the inclusion as an honour, a reward, an opportunity, and a privilege.
Dwight Howard said, “I’d rather be playing on Christmas than sitting at home wishing I was playing on Christmas.”
Not all NBA teams and players are given the chance to play before thousands of adoring fans.
How many NBA games are played on Christmas?
The Association sets five games every year. For the 2019-20 campaign, here are the marquee matchups.
- Los Angeles Clippers vs Los Angeles Lakers
- Boston Celtics vs Toronto Raptors
- New Orleans Pelicans vs Denver Nuggets
- Houston Rockets vs Golden State Warriors
- Milwaukee Bucks vs Philadelphia 76ers
Do the New York Knicks always play on Christmas?
Knicks always play on Christmas. For 53 years, they are included in the roster. They won’t be playing this year, however.
It’s one of the saddest exits from the previous lineups. It performed the worst in the last season with 17-65 record. The Knicks have not appeared on any playoffs as well since 2013.
But did you know that the Knicks played and won the first-ever Christmas day game against Providence Steam Rollers, 89-75?
Which NBA teams will play this Christmas?
Other teams who won’t be playing this year are Portland Trail Blazers, Oklahoma City Thunder, and the Utah Jazz.
On the other hand, new teams in the lineup include New Orleans Pelicans, Toronto Raptors, Los Angeles Clippers, and the Denver Nuggets.
Featured Image Source
Upcoming sports tournaments in September 2023
With the approach of September, brace yourself for an upsurge in excitement as a captivating lineup of sporting occasions is on the verge of captivating sports enthusiasts worldwide. The upcoming sports tournaments in September are poised to deliver a whirlwind of athletic skill and adrenaline-charged instances, spanning intense basketball clashes to pulse-pounding soccer duels. Enthusiasts and bettors are eagerly awaiting the most favorable wagers for these imminent sports tournaments, while teams and athletes gear up to contend on the grandest stage. In the upcoming weeks, we will dissect the significant matches, delving deeper into the events set to command global attention.
This article was prepared with the help of our partners from Free Betting Reviews!
September upcoming sports tournaments 2023
US Open Tennis Championship
As the calendar flips to September, the US Open Tennis Championship continues its momentum. The onset of September signals the commencement of the third round of the illustrious US Open tennis tournament. Set against the backdrop of Flushing Meadows in New York, this Grand Slam affair holds an esteemed position in the tennis calendar. Being the final Grand Slam event of the year, the competition is expected to intensify as eminent players such as Novak Djokovic, Carlos Alcaraz, Iga Swiatek, Jessica Pegula, and various others engage in a fierce battle for supremacy on the unforgiving hard courts.
NFL Season Kickoff
September heralds the much-awaited return of the NFL, a momentous occasion for American football aficionados. With the preseason wrapping up in August, the NFL season’s kickoff in September ushers in a flurry of excitement and a plethora of betting prospects. Featuring a jam-packed schedule of games every week, bettors have an array of choices at their disposal when strategizing their wagers. It’s a time when teams embark on their journey toward the Super Bowl, and this monumental pursuit begins right from the inaugural game week.
UEFA Champions League starts
Soccer devotees will find themselves glued to their screens as the group stages of the UEFA Champions League kick off during the third week of September. This premier club competition showcases the crème de la crème of European teams vying for continental dominance. Boasting a mix of star-studded lineups and unexpected contenders, the Champions League is renowned for its unpredictability, often giving rise to enticing betting prospects. Brace yourself for witnessing Europe’s finest teams battling it out on the grandest stage, all in pursuit of one of the most coveted titles across the globe.
FIBA Basketball World Cup
The commencement of the second round of the FIBA Basketball World Cup takes center stage. This event stands as one of the most renowned and eagerly anticipated spectacles in the global sports arena. The tournament ignites a captivating showcase of skill, tactics, and passion that goes beyond geographical boundaries, uniting basketball enthusiasts worldwide as nations from every corner of the globe converge on the court.
F1 Italian Grand Prix
With the arrival of September each year, the F1 Italian Grand Prix takes the spotlight, drawing the gaze of the motorsports community toward the iconic Monza Circuit situated in Italy. This event serves as the second F1 race following a brief summer hiatus. The question on everyone’s mind: Will Verstappen maintain his dominance in the world of F1 this year?
September ushers in an exhilarating arena encompassing a spectrum of upcoming sports tournaments including tennis, American football, soccer, basketball, and Formula 1. The US Open tennis tournament stirs fervor as it enters its dynamic third round, simultaneously marking the commencement of a fresh NFL season. Meanwhile, the UEFA Champions League illuminates the soccer world with its captivating group stage clashes, while the FIBA Basketball World Cup provides its own dose of exhilaration. Not to be outdone, the F1 Italian Grand Prix captivates the hearts of motorsports enthusiasts. To explore more news tied to these upcoming sports tournaments, ensure to stay connected with Half A Goal!
Top 5 NBA Favorites: Championship Contenders and Rankings for 2023
Enthusiastic fans are eagerly anticipating another thrilling basketball season as the NBA gears up for the 2023–24 season. In this highly anticipated analysis, we delve into the top five favorites in the NBA for the upcoming year, meticulously evaluating the teams contending for the championship and their respective rankings. Join us as we explore the dynamic landscape of the most promising teams in the NBA, dissecting their strengths, strategies, and potential to leave a lasting mark on the history of basketball. From well-established powerhouses aiming to maintain their dominance to emerging challengers eagerly seeking their moment in the spotlight. Here are the top 5 NBA Favorites expected to contend for a championship ring in the upcoming season.
This article was written with the support of our partners Free Betting Reviews
NBA Favorites Rankings for the 2023-24 Season
As we approach the 2023-24 NBA season, let’s take a look at how prominent media sources have positioned the NBA favorites teams in their rankings. It’s important to keep in mind that this compilation is based on subjective analysis and is not sourced from the official NBA website. With potential roster changes and team dynamics, these rankings might see adjustments before the season commences.
- 1. Denver Nuggets, 2. Boston Celtics, 3. Miami Heat, 4. Milwaukee Bucks, 5. Philadelphia 76ers, 6. Phoenix Suns, 7. Los Angeles Lakers, 8. Memphis Grizzlies, 9. New York Knicks, 10. Golden State Warriors, 11. Sacramento Kings, 12. Cleveland Cavaliers, 13. Los Angeles Clippers, 14. New Orleans Pelicans, 15. Oklahoma City Thunder.
- 16. Minnesota Timberwolves, 17. Dallas Mavericks, 18. Atlanta Hawks, 19. Brooklyn Nets, 20. Chicago Bulls, 21. Toronto Raptors, 22. Utah Jazz, 23. Indiana Pacers, 24. Orlando Magic, 25. Portland Trail Blazers, 26. Washington Wizards, 27. San Antonio Spurs, 28. Houston Rockets, 29. Charlotte Hornets, 30. Detroit Pistons.
Top five NBA favorites of Championship in the 2023-24 season
- Who better to support for a repeat performance in the upcoming season than the reigning champions themselves? The 2022-23 NBA titleholders secured their victory in a remarkable fashion that left the basketball world astounded. The Denver Nuggets demonstrated extraordinary precision during last year’s postseason, not losing more than two games in any series. A particularly notable achievement was their sweep of the LeBron James-led Lakers in the conference finals.
- They’ve managed to maintain their core lineup for the most part during the offseason, despite losing a significant role player in Bruce Brown to the Indiana Pacers in free agency. There’s a strong belief that the defending champions will take steps to fill this void as they aim to secure another victory next season. Led by the Finals MVP, Nikola Jokic, the Nuggets remain the favored choice to clinch the title once again.
- The Miami Heat, under the guidance of Eric Spoelstra, have experienced significant postseason accomplishments. Yet, despite these achievements, they have been unable to assemble the final piece of the puzzle and capture a championship ring. The Heat have reached two out of the last three NBA Finals, displaying their prowess in the playoffs. Nevertheless, they have fallen short in the finals consistently. The ongoing trade rumors about adding a third star to the dynamic duo of Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo suggest that the Heat may finally be on the path to solving this puzzle.
- Reports indicate Damian Lillard’s strong desire to join the Miami Heat, a sentiment supported by the departures of players like Gabe Vincent and Max Strus from the team. A potential deal appears to be in the works, given that Miami is clearing space for a player of Lillard’s caliber. This strategic move positions Miami as a formidable contender for the championship title.
- Much like the Miami Heat, the Boston Celtics have experienced postseason success but have struggled to seal the deal in the final stages. The Celtics have reached the last four Eastern Conference finals and even faced defeat against the Warriors in the 2022 NBA Finals. The Celtics made notable offseason moves, with the most significant being the trade of Marcus Smart for Kristaps Porzingis.
- While losing the Defensive Player of the Year in Marcus Smart is a blow, the addition of Porzingis, a dominant force in the paint, brings scoring prowess to the team. Porzingis’ inclusion complements Jaylen Brown’s contract extension, positioning the Celtics for another impressive run in the upcoming season.
Los Angeles Lakers
- The Los Angeles Lakers’ surge towards the end of the previous regular season to secure a playoff spot was no fluke, as evidenced by their deep postseason journey, cut short by the Denver Nuggets in the Western Conference Finals. The Lakers mean business, evident in their aggressive approach to free agency during the offseason.
- The Los Angeles Lakers secured the signings of Gabe Vincent, Cam Reddish, Taurean Prince, and Jaxson Hayes as free agents. This strategic move by Lakers’ General Manager Rob Pelinka sets the team up for success while retaining the core lineup from the previous season. The Lakers are poised to make a significant impact in the league in the upcoming season. With LeBron James entering his 21st season, the timing seems ideal for another championship run.
- Despite adding Kevin Durant to the team late in the regular season, the Phoenix Suns experienced a disappointing playoff run in the recently concluded NBA season. This marked their second consecutive second-round exit from the playoffs. The team’s management has undergone changes, including the firing of Head Coach Monty Williams and the appointment of Frank Vogel, as well as a three-way trade that brought Bradley Beal into the fold after Chris Paul’s departure.
- The trio of Kevin Durant, Devin Booker, and Bradley Beal has captured attention across the league. Although this may have come at the expense of depth, the combined power of these three players is too formidable to ignore. The question remains whether Frank Vogel will be the one to lead the Suns to a championship. Regardless, the Suns emerge as strong contenders for the title in the upcoming season.
As time progresses and the regular season approaches, the ultimate victor that will inscribe their name onto the championship trophy and solidify their status among the legends remains to be seen. Stay updated on NBA Favorites of current season with HaG!
Hoops on Fire: The Hottest Preview on FIBA 3×3 World Tour 2023
Step into the exhilarating realm of 3×3 FIBA basketball, a place where the stakes have never been higher, and the intensity of the game reaches new heights! This summer, all eyes are on Canada as the 3×3 FIBA World Tour Masters descends upon North America, showcasing the finest 3×3 basketball talents in the world. The FIBA 3×3 World Tour stands as the pinnacle of this unique sport, uniting elite players from across the globe to compete in a series of captivating tournaments held in renowned locations worldwide. In anticipation of the forthcoming 3×3 FIBA World Tour 2023 masters, we present to you the top Picks, where the basketball community eagerly awaits this remarkable exhibition of skill, athleticism, and an unrestrained passion for the game.
FIBA 3×3 World Tour 2023: Edmonton Masters Tournament Details
Date: July 28 – July 30, 2023
- Pool Phase for 3×3 World Tour Masters: July 28, 2023
- Pool Phase for FIBA 3×3 Women’s Series: July 28, 2023
- Men’s FIBA 3×3 World Tour Masters Finals: July 28, 2023
- FIBA 3×3 Women’s Series Finals: July 30, 2023
Time: All the action kicks off at 11:00 am MDT (Mountain Daylight Time),
Location: The FIBA 3×3 World Tour 2023 will take place at the vibrant Fan Park, located at the ice district in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.
Live Streaming: For those unable to attend the event in person, don’t worry! The thrilling games will be available for live streaming on YouTube
FIBA 3×3 schedule Edmonton Masters
Qualifying Draw A
San Juan vs St. Boniface
Santiago UNAB vs St. Boniface
San Juan vs Santiago UNAB
Ub Huishan NE vs Dusseldorf LFDY
Amsterdam HiPRO vs Toronto KBA
Riga vs Washington DC
Ulaanbaatar MMC Energy vs QD A/I
Ub Huishan NE vs Wuxi
Amsterdam HiPRO vs Princeton
Riga vs Lausanne
Ulaanbaatar MMC Energy vs Liman Huishan NE
Wuxi vs Dusseldorf LFDY
Princeton vs Toronto KBA
Lausanne vs Washington DC
Liman Huishan NE vs QD A/I
Pool A’s game-one winner vs Pool C’s game-two winner;
Pool D’s game-one winner will face Pool B’s winners;
Pool B’s game-one winner vs Pool D’s game-two winners;
Pool C’s game-one winner against Pool A’s game-two winner.
QF game 1 winner vs QF game two winners;
QF game three winners vs QF game four winners.
SF game 1 winner vs SF game two winner
FIBA 3×3 basketball Edmonton masters team standings
- Ub Huishan NE SRB: Pool A
- Amsterdam HiPRO NED: Pool B
- Riga LAT: Pool C
- Ulaanbaatar MMC Energy MGL: Pool D
- Liman Huishan NE SRB: Pool D
- Lausanne SUI: Pool C
- Princeton USA: Pool B
- Wuxi CHN: Pool A
- Dusseldorf LFDY GER: Pool A
- Toronto KBA CAN: Pool B
- Washington DC USA: Pool C
- San Juan PUR: Qualifying Draw A
- Santiago UNAB CHI: Qualifying Draw A
- St. Boniface CAN: Qualifying Draw A
The above standings are according to the teams’ ranking from highest to lowest.
Preview of the 3×3 FIBA Edmonton Masters
In this segment, we will explore key insights drawn from the FIBA World Tour competition, specifically focusing on the takeaways gathered from the four latest masters events. Notably, we will be delving into the outcomes of the most recent FIBA 3×3 World Tour Masters, which took place in Macau.
Dominant Serbians Shine in FIBA 3×3 World Tour
- The Serbian 3×3 basketball team has been displaying an awe-inspiring performance this year, solidifying their position as a force to be reckoned with. Their incredible achievements in winning all four Masters tournaments in the current year, a feat they also accomplished in 2022, are a testament to their unrivaled skill and dominance in the FIBA 3×3 world tour.
- With each competition they participate in, the Serbian team continues to impress, leaving their opponents in awe. Their success can be attributed to a combination of remarkable individual talent and seamless team collaboration. Their unique style of play sets them apart from other teams, making it challenging for their adversaries to counter their strategies effectively.
The Germans can’t catch a break
- The struggles of the German team, Dusseldorf LFDY, have been evident as they have faced a disappointing record of 0-6 in the three Masters events held this year. Despite their consistent qualification for a significant number of masters’ events, their performance on the professional tour has not been up to par.
- One of the key factors contributing to their setbacks seems to be the World Tour stage, where the intensity of competition and spotlight have proved to be challenging for the German team. It is clear that Dusseldorf LFDY possesses potential, given their consistent qualification for top-level tournaments. However, they have yet to find their rhythm and achieve the desired outcomes in these high-pressure events.
Stojacic reigns supreme
- In the realm of 3×3 basketball, Ub Huishan NE’s Stojacic is undoubtedly a force to be reckoned with. This season has seen him clinch two well-deserved MVP awards, a testament to his exceptional skills and dedication to the game. Despite his already impressive achievements, Stojacic remains steadfast in his pursuit of excellence, showing no sign of relinquishing his dominant position.
- A closer look at his performance reveals why he has earned such accolades. Stojacic commands the top spot in virtually every crucial statistical category, making him a formidable opponent on the court. Scoring an impressive average of 6.8 points per game, he consistently contributes to his team’s success. What sets him apart even further is his astounding shooting accuracy, boasting an impressive 78% from the field, a feat that few can match. Beyond that, he showcases his versatility by shooting at a remarkable 32% from downtown, demonstrating his ability to deliver when the stakes are high.
Best Pick of FIBA 3×3 World Tour 2023 tournament
- The reigning champions of the FIBA 3×3 World Tour 2022, Ub Huishan NE, have been displaying an exceptional performance in the current 2023 world tour, indicating a strong possibility of securing a two-peat. Their consistent dominance throughout the tour is a testament to their prowess and resilience.
- Considering their impressive track record and consistent form, it would be unwise to underestimate the Serbian team. As they gear up for the forthcoming Edmonton Masters, it seems highly likely that they will emerge as the victors once again. Their unwavering strength and skill on the court make them the clear favorites for the upcoming event.
The FIBA 3×3 World Tour 2023 Edmonton Masters is anticipated to be a captivating and one-of-a-kind event for basketball enthusiasts globally. The tournament’s fusion of skill, tactics, and fast-paced gameplay will undoubtedly enthrall spectators, fostering an atmosphere of anticipation and unity. Those seeking further basketball updates may explore the Half a goal website for the latest news.
Overview for UEFA Europa League, and Conference League and Champions League group stage 2023
Italian Serie A upcoming matches overview: September 2023
2023 Singapore Grand Prix Preview
10 young players in Bundesliga to keep an eye in 2023
Autosport F1 news: September 2023 preview
UEFA Euro 2024 qualifying latest forecasts
What You Need To Know About Asian Handicap Betting on Football
3 Tennis Legends and Their Charitable Endeavours
Football Legends Weighed In: Messi is better than Ronaldo
Tennis Smash: 10 Tennis Players With the Best Overhead Play
NFL Uniform Policies: What Players Can and Cannot Wear
6 Oldest Tennis Players While Still Active
Tennis2 months ago
ATP Washington: Citi Open 2023 – Ranking the Top 5 Tennis Players
Football2 months ago
Champions League qualification 2023/24: top 5 teams for group stage
Formula 12 months ago
The Unpredictable Thrills of the 2023 Belgian Grand Prix
Football2 months ago
Top 3 Teams from the Group Stage of the 2023 Women’s World Cup
Martial arts1 month ago
Usyk vs Dubois: Fight details & preview
Tennis2 months ago
World-Class Tennis: Mubadala Silicon Valley Classic 2023
Football2 months ago
Championship Predictions for New Football Season 2023-24
NBA2 months ago
Top 5 NBA Favorites: Championship Contenders and Rankings for 2023