Sports During The Holiday: A look into how the NFL and NBA display games for Thanksgiving and Christmas day.

While enjoying the Thanksgiving and Christmas breaks schools provide the students, the holidays wouldn’t be completed without the nationally televised games from the National Football League and National Basketball Association. 

Games on Thanksgiving and Christmas have been televised for many years. For example, NFL Thanksgiving games every year have featured both the Detroit Lions and Dallas Cowboys. The tradition started in 1934, when the Lions made their first appearance on Thanksgiving, playing the World Champion Chicago Bears in their introduction to the NFL. The game was an instant classic, opening the door to Thanksgiving game popularity. Thirteen years later, the NBA hosted their first Christmas game between the New York Knicks and Providence Steamrollers, continuing their exciting matchups between popular teams. 

Personally, it is an excellent time of the year. Having the opportunity to enjoy family quality time, food, and sports throughout both days is terrific. But, well, unless you’ve witnessed your team losing that day, it is annoying.

Growing up, I’ve witnessed the joy and frustration of watching your team playing on Thanksgiving and Christmas day. With my dad being a Cowboys fan, it’s hilarious at times. The number of mood swings he goes through, from pass incompletions, dropped passes, missed field goals, lousy defense to penalties, is entertaining. Even I go through those phases when watching my Los Angeles Lakers struggled to make a basket, to the point I lose my voice in disgust. 

However, even going through the agony of wanting to win, these holidays wouldn’t be fulfilled without some entertainment. 

Thanksgiving games have already been played. From 12:30 p.m. to 8:20 p.m. displayed three great games any fan would enjoy, regardless of the outcome. First, the Lions remain winless at a record of 0-10-1, losing to the Bears in a close game. Next, the Cowboys faced the Oakland Raiders. This was arguably the best game of the day. However, consistent mistakes from Dallas cost them the game losing 33-36. Finally, the Buffalo Bills destroyed the New Orleans Saints 31-6 to close out Thanksgiving. 

Now, Christmas games are coming up with five games between 12 p.m. and 10:30 p.m., displaying rematches and a potential Finals matchup. I’m particularly interested in the Golden State Warriors in Phoenix to face the Suns. So, enjoy your time with your families and tune in for the NBA Christmas Games.

Sources: ABC, Bleacher Report, NBA, NFL,

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