NBA Christmas Day Picks
NBA Christmas Day Picks – Christmas Day is always a must-watch slate of games for the NBA. This year is no different, and all five games bring about a lot of appeal.
Things would be even better if Anthony Davis wasn’t injured, but we’ll get to that soon. Here is a preview of all five Christmas Day games.
Philadelphia 76ers vs New York Knicks (76ers -2.5)
Tipoff: Noon EST
Two Eastern Conference playoff teams face off in Madison Square Garden, and this game has all sorts of star power. Joel Embiid Tobias Harris, and James Harden go up against Jalen Brunson and Julius Randle in the first game of the day.
The Sixers have six straight victories heading into Friday’s game with the Los Angeles Clippers, and the Knicks won eight in a row before losing to the Toronto Raptors on December 21.
Both teams are playing terrific basketball, and this could be the best game of the day. The Sixers are 18-12 against the spread, although they are 5-7 ATS on the road. The Sixers lost to the Knicks in their first matchup of the season back in November, 106-104, in a close game.
The Knicks have a difficult matchup and have to find a way to stop Embiid, who didn’t play in the earlier game this season.
I’ll go with the Sixers here beating the -2.5 spread.
Matt’s Pick: Sixers -2.5
Los Angeles Lakers vs Dallas Mavericks (Mavericks -7.5)
Tipoff: 2:30 PM EST
We discussed this game as a potential upset of the week, and with the line being at -7.5 in Dallas’ favor, this is a terrific way to go. The Lakers don’t have Anthony Davis, but LeBron James is on fire and scored 31 points with 11 assists and six rebounds in a loss to the Sacramento Kings.
Christmas Day means more for everybody, and LeBron should show up and could put together a masterful performance against Luka Doncic.
The Lakers +7.5 provides terrific value to the sharp bettor.
Matt’s Pick: Lakers +7.5
Milwaukee Bucks vs Boston Celtics (Celtics -4.5)
Tipoff: 5:00 PM EST
This is the best game of the entire slate in many ways. The two best teams in the Eastern Conference – and arguably the entire NBA – get the middle of the day matchup. Giannis Antetokounmpo against Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown is must-watch TV, and the winner likely takes over the top spot in the East with 2023 right around the corner.
Boston has lost five games at home this year, although this is their first matchup with Milwaukee. The Celtics are favored by -4.5, and you have to think part of that is due to them playing at home.
Nonetheless, Giannis is unstoppable, and the Bucks send the Celtics’ fans home with an unfortunate Christmas Day loss.
Matt’s Pick: Bucks +4.5
Memphis Grizzlies vs Golden State Warriors (Warriors +4.5)
Tipoff: 8:00 PM EST
This game would have been so much better if Stephen Curry was healthy. Unfortunately, Warriors’ fans will be making their way to the arena without their best player on the court.
This is also the first meeting of the year between these two teams, and Ja Morant seems primed for a monster performance on Christmas Day in California. Whichever way the line ends up being, the Grizzlies should walk away with this game.
Matt’s Pick: Grizz -4.5
Phoenix Suns vs Denver Nuggets (Nuggets -2.5)
Tipoff: 10:30 PM EST
This is the final game of the day and a matchup between two teams who could meet in the Western Conference Finals. Devin Booker, Chris Paul and DeAndre Ayton go against Jamal Murray, Aaron Gordon, and Nikola Jokic in a massive battle.
The NBA schedule makers did it the right way as this will also be the first meeting of the year between the Suns and Nuggets. We could see Jokic post a triple-double, Booker go off again, or Ayton become the star. This game has so much star power it’s hard to predict, and the Nuggets being favored by -2.5 is essentially because they are the home team.
I’ll roll with the Suns getting the upset here in what could be an overtime thriller in Denver.