Christmas Day is no longer sacred: The National Basketball League is making Australian sporting history as it schedules games on December 25 – following in the footsteps of the NBA and NFL
- NBL champions Sydney Kings host Melbourne United on Christmas Day
- Follows the leagues of the NBA and NFL that have games for fans on December 25th
- No sports organization in Australia has previously played on this holy day
- Kings co-owner Paul Smith called the game’s announcement a “game changer.”
The NBL enters new sporting territory and decides on a game date Christmas Day, this year.
The bold decision follows the lead of NBA and NFL in the US, who enjoy big audiences on the traditional family day.
The NBA has a long history of marquee play on Christmas Day — dating back to 1947 — on what is now the biggest day of the regular season.
Basketball fans in Australia are also treated to a clash between the Adelaide 36ers and South East Melbourne Phoenix at the Adelaide Entertainment Center on Christmas Eve.
Breaking new ground in sport, the NBL has decided to host a game between the Sydney Kings (pictured) and Melbourne United on Christmas Day this year
The NBL’s bold decision follows the lead of the NBA and NFL in the US, which enjoy huge ratings on the traditional Family Day on December 25 (stock image)
With Christmas Eve and Boxing Day falling on a weekend this year, NBL officials have decided to test the waters in the port city.
Kings co-owner Paul Smith called the game announcement a “game changer.”
“It’s the final planning limit in sport in Australia,” Smith said Sydney Morning Herald.
“We are a society in transition. Christmas is not a sacred event for all of us, and for many people it can be a lonely day.
“So to be able to come out at a world-class venue for a world-class basket game or just watch the Sydney Kings on TV at home is a game changer.”
Kings co-owner Paul Smith called the Xmas Day game announcement a “game changer”.
NBL Commissioner Jeremy Loeliger believes playing on Christmas Day could draw new eyes to the sport.
He was also excited that the NBL will be first professional sports entity in Australia bold enough to offer a live sports option What a very special day for so many people.
“Christmas Day has become a celebratory day on the NBA calendar and we are confident that it will have a similar impact on us and our clubs,” he said.
“The Kings have been very proactive in hosting the first game on Christmas Day and we are confident they will do a great job.”
The NBL will release its full 2022-2023 schedule on July 25.