NEW YORK – The NBA on Christmas Day has become a holiday tradition for fans around the world. With all five games televised in 215 countries in 47 languages and more than 730 million fans globally following the NBA on social media, Christmas Day is likely to be one of the most talked about days on the NBA calendar.
As the league prepares to tip off this holiday tradition for the 67th time, here are 10 stocking stuffers about the NBA Christmas Day games, which will air this year on ABC, TNT and ESPN:
10 – NBA teams in action on Christmas Day, marking the seventh consecutive year that five games will be nationally televised on Dec. 25.
9 – International players on San Antonio’s Christmas Day roster, most of any team this season. In total, 33 international players will be on rosters for NBA teams playing on Christmas Day, including the Cleveland Cavaliers, Golden State Warriors, and New York Knicks with four each.
8 – Number of former No. 1 overall draft picks on rosters for NBA teams playing on Dec. 25 – Tim Duncan (1997), LeBron James (2003), Andrew Bogut (2005), Andrea Bargnani (2006), Derrick Rose (2008), Blake Griffin (2009), John Wall (2010) and Kyrie Irving (2011).
7 – Current and former NBA players celebrating birthdays on Dec. 25, including New Orleans Pelicans guard Eric Gordon.
6 – Australian players on rosters for teams playing on Christmas Day (most of any country outside of the U.S.): Cameron Bairstow (CHI), Matthew Dellavedova (CLE), Kyrie Irving (CLE), Andrew Bogut (GSW), Aron Baynes (SAS) and Patty Mills (SAS).
5 – Number of NBA championships won by both San Antonio’s Tim Duncan and Los Angeles’s Kobe Bryant. Duncan will be playing in his fifth Christmas Day game and Bryant will be making a record 16th appearance on Dec 25.
4 – The top four active Christmas Day scoring leaders will be on display this year: Kobe Bryant (383), Dwyane Wade (227), LeBron James (215) and Kevin Durant (159).
3 – Times in NBA history that ABC, ESPN and TNT have combined to present NBA games on Christmas Day. ABC’s trio of Mike Breen, Jeff Van Gundy and Mark Jackson will call their fifth Christmas Day game together while TNT’s “Three Wise Men” — Charles Barkley, Kenny Smith and Shaquille O’Neal — will join Ernie Johnson for a special Christmas edition of “Inside the NBA.”
2 – The Golden State Warriors’ dynamic duo of Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson, this season’s highest scoring backcourt combination in the NBA, are each averaging 20+ ppg and hold a combined average of 45.4 ppg.
1 – New York Knicks, with the most appearances on Christmas Day (50), after playing their first Christmas Day game against the Providence Steamrollers in 1947.
NBA ON CHRISTMAS DAY
Game Time Network
Washington at New York Noon ET ESPN
Oklahoma City at San Antonio 2:30 p.m. ET ABC
Cleveland at Miami 5:00 p.m. ET ABC
L.A. Lakers at Chicago 8:00 p.m. ET TNT
Golden State at L.A. Clippers 10:30 p.m. ET TNT