The NBA gives itself a Christmas day in the heat of the wave of covid-19

Resisting the uncontrolled expansion of the coronavirus in the teams, the NBA will celebrate this Saturday, December 25, its traditional and strategic Christmas day with several passionate duels and the return from the quarantine of figures like James Harden.

Nine games have been suspended so far, but nothing bent the NBA’s will to keep the competition going and take advantage of the Christmas showcase.

Just as Thanksgiving is a traditional NFL preserve, the NBA tends to have its best television ratings day at Christmas, sometimes topping the playoff playoffs.

To do this, it offers a calculated menu with five games between the most followed teams, which promised to bring the biggest superstars in the league to the screens.

The main clash was supposed to be between the Los Angeles Lakers and the Brooklyn Nets, but the pandemic ruined the long-awaited duel between LeBron James and Kevin Durant.

The two stars haven’t met since Christmas Day 2018 when Durant was still wearing the Golden State Warriors uniform.

Durant and Kyrie Irving, isolated from the team by covid-19, will cause loss for the Nets while the Lakers, in very low hours with four consecutive losses, are without the injured Anthony Davis.

Nets coach Steve Nash can count on James Harden back after 10 days in lockdown.

Brooklyn had to postpone its last three games due to the COVID-19 outbreak in its locker room while the Lakers have also temporarily lost numerous players, including their manager, Frank Vogel, to the virus.

“This is the unknown,” LeBron James said of the unpredictable situation. β€œI say that each year has its own challenges and in this one you can literally have a guy one night and not the next. You really don’t know, it’s in the air. “

β€œIs it going to be one of the biggest games I’m used to playing on Christmas Day? No. There are many boys on leave, “acknowledged the veteran ‘King James’. “But it is a game that both teams want to win, regardless of the circumstances.”

Antetokounmpo, out of isolation

In addition to Harden, another of the players who served his quarantine in the last hours is the Greek Giannis Antetokounmpo, leader of the Milwaukee Bucks.

Antetokounmpo does not appear in the part of losses of Friday of the reigning champions and could participate in the Christmas card in the clash against the Boston Celtics.

The star dish of the day could be in Phoenix in the game between the Suns and the Golden State Warriors for the leadership of the Western Conference.

At the helm of the game will be the main favorite for the MVP (Most Valuable Player) award, Stephen Curry (Warriors), and another candidate, veteran Chris Paul (Suns).

Instead, the pandemic looks set to avoid the presence of Luka Doncic (Dallas Mavericks) and Trae Young (Atlanta Hawks) in the other two games on Saturday.

The NBA hoped to offer its fans the return of the talented and brash Young to Madison Square Garden in New York, where in the past playoffs he became one of the favorite villains of the Knicks public.

For his part, Doncic entered the virus prevention protocols this week and had already been dragging an ankle discomfort.

The Mavericks will try to win back Kristaps Porzingis, with a bad toe problem, for a chance of victory against the Utah Jazz of Donovan Mitchell, who is excited to play for the second time this Christmas.

“I don’t care,” the All-Star guard said of the absences. β€œWe are going to play at Christmas. So you have to go out to show and have fun ”.

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