NBA Christmas Day 2018 - LeBron Takes On The Warriors
NBA Christmas Day 2018
NBA Christmas Quick Picks
- New York Knicks (+294) vs. Milwaukee Bucks (-370)
Pick Bucks (-370)
- Oklahoma City Thunder (+166) vs Houston Rockets (-196)
Pick Thunder (+166)
- Philadelphia 76ers (+166) vs. Boston Celtics (-196)
Pick Celtics (-196)
- Los Angeles Lakers (+276) vs. Golden State Warriors (-357)
Pick Warriors (-357)
- Portland Trail Blazers (+141) vs. Utah Jazz (-164)
Pick Trail Blazers (+141)
NBA Christmas Games 2018
Milwaukee Bucks (-370) vs New York Knicks (+294)
An injury to Kristaps Porzingis ruins what could’ve been a fascinating matchup of emerging megastars. Giannis Antetokounmpo is among the top MVP candidates this season, averaging 26.8 PPG, 13.1 RPG and 6.0 APG on 58.9% shooting. He’s also dominating on the defensive end, averaging 1.3 steals and 1.3 blocks per game. Without Kristaps, the Knicks don’t have a path to the playoffs or a reasonable chance to win this matchup. New York’s aiming for the lottery, so expect the Bucks to emerge with an easy W.
Oklahoma City Thunder (+166) vs Houston Rockets (-196)
As the NBA MVPs over the past two years, James Harden and Russell Westbrook both know the heartbreak of nearly winning a championship. Harden was one game away from a finals matchup against the depleted Cavs, while Westbrook endured a sweep at the hands of LeBron in 2012. Winning Christmas games on the road is tough, but the Thunder’s elite defense travels well as the Rockets struggle over the first half of the season.
As the NBA MVPs over the past two years, James Harden and Russell Westbrook both know the heartbreak of nearly winning a championship.
Philadelphia 76ers (+166) vs Boston Celtics (-196)
Jimmy Butler joining the 76ers adds another layer of intrigue to this matchup. GM Danny Ainge was reportedly angling for Butler, but the Bulls refused to budge. Instead, Boston struggles to regain last year’s playoff spark as Kyrie and Hayward reintegrate into the rotation. The Toronto Raptors are playing fantastic basketball, but some believe that these two clubs will meet in the eastern conference playoffs. Philly typically has a tough time winning in Boston, so Celtics fans can expect a nice gift.
Los Angeles Lakers (+276) vs Golden State Warriors (-357)
LeBron James and the Lakers meet Steph Curry and the Warriors for the prime-time main event of Christmas Day NBA basketball.
Los Angeles emerged from the gates slowly this season before rising in the west standings, while the Warriors have taken it easy over the first part of the campaign. As a potential western conference finals matchup, expect both teams to show out. After a questionable loss at home to the Raptors, Golden State will send a message to the NBA with a resounding win over King James.
Portland Trail Blazers (+141) at Utah Jazz (-164)
Portland suffered a disheartening sweep to the Pelicans in the playoffs after an outstanding regular season last year. Instead of moping, the Blazers have balled, including a big win against the Raptors in mid-December. The Jazz enjoyed unexpected playoff success last year, but Donovan Mitchell has taken a step back as a primary scorer this season. Utah’s famously stout defense hasn’t been effective, regressing outside of the top five. Since the Jazz don’t score or defend well, the Blazers will have a shot at winning in Utah.
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