Boston Celtics VS Toronto Raptors
The Boston Celtics steal the win from defending champions, Toronto Raptors. Jaylen Brown celebrated his Christmas day scoring five 3-pointers, and shooting 10 for 13 from the field totaling 30 points for a 118-102 win. Along with a remarkable performance from Brown, teammate Kemba Walker scored 22 points and teammate Enes Kantar had 12 points and 11 rebounds. Gordon Hayward returned to the courts tonight after missing a straight three games due to his left foot, Hayward scored 14 points. With the raptors second straight loss, Fred VanVleet still had a fantastic game with 27 points, and another great game from teammate Chris Boucher scored 24 points achieving his career-high. Considering Toronto has had a couple of key players out, like center Marc Gasol, guard Norman Powell, and forward Pascal Siakam they are still holding their own as they go 2-2 the past four games. Toronto coach Nick Nurse explains how “Scoring is not very easy for us right now,” due to the injured trio. The Raptors Kyle Lowry scored 14 points and Serge Ibaka had 12 points. Toronto carried a 10-0 lead at the beginning of the game which was lost quickly when the Celtics went on a 28-9 scoring run, holding the lead for most of the game closing out the win.
Philadelphia 76ers VS Milwaukee Bucks
Number 1 seed Milwaukee Bucks and number 4 seed in the eastern conference Philadelphia 76ers face off as the Bucks carry the best record in the league. With an extremely exciting matchup, Joel Embiid outplayed opponent MVP Giannas Antetokounmpo as he scored 31 points, and collected 11 rebounds leading the 76ers to a 121-109 win on Christmas Day. With a season-high of 21 team threes, Tobias Harris sunk five of those, Embiid hitting three, and Furkan Korkmaz and Josh Richardson hitting four of them. The Bucks Kris Middleton scored 31 points and Antetokounmpo had 18 points. With a missed call and getting a technical in the third quarter, Antetokounmpo got in his head and became flustered. Today the 76ers played like a championship team on the defensive and offensive end. With the success, the Sixers move to 18-14 record on Christmas Day, while the Bucks tumble to 3-3. Even though it was just a game in December, the matchup between the two groups felt like it could be a potential see of the Eastern Conference finals.
Houston Rockets VS Golden State Warriors
A Christmas day upset which was not expected. The 8-24 Golden State Warriors figured out how to pull off a win to the fourth-ranked team in the western conference, Houston Rockets. Draymond Green stepped up in the second half where he scored 16 of his 20 points, Damion Lee acquired his career-high of 22 points, Glenn Robinson III helped with 18 points, and D’Angelo Russell with 20 points to win their third straight game, 116-104. For the Rockets Russell Westbrook had 30 points and 12 rebounds. Westbrook has had his ninth straight game of 20 or more points which is the longest player on the Houston Rockets other than James Harden to achieve this. Teammate James Harden had 24 points and 11 assists. Once the Warriors found their groove and got their edge over the Rockets, they put the Rockets in a huge scoring drought. This unexpected game leaves the Golden State community eager for more.
LA Clippers VS LA Lakers
What a game for Kawhi Leonard as he scored 35 points, and collected 12 rebounds helping his team, the Los Angeles Clippers, creep over the Los Angeles Lakers for the 111-106 win. Kawhi had help from teammates Monterzl Harrel who had 18 points, Paul George who had 17 points know making this season record against the Lakers 2-0. For the LA Lakers, Kyle Kuzma had a solid 25 points, Anthony Davis with 24 points, and Lebron James with 23 points, 10 assist, and nine rebounds. This is now the Lakers' fourth straight loss. Down by three with three seconds left the Lakers had a chance to tie up the game, but with great defense by Patrick Beverly, it was not possible. Today Lebron James played his 14th Christmas day game, which is the second-most games played on Christmas day to Kobe Bryant.
Denver Nuggets VS New Orlean Pelicans
Another Christmas day upset as Brandon Ingram and the New Orlean Pelicans find a way to stop the Denver Nuggets. Tonight Brandon Ingram scored 31 points displaying his depth as a player, which is a big reason the Pelicans came out with a win. The 9-23 young New Orleans team has now won two games against the Nuggets this season. Even though 19 turnovers were committed for the Pelicans it seemed to not be a problem considering Lonzo ball and Ingram found their groove and were shooting great. For the Nuggets, Nikola Jokic ended the game with 23 points and 10 rebounds, while Jerami Grant possessed 17 points. But it still was not enough for a Nuggets win on this Christmas day. An upset like this was not expected considering rookie Zion Williamson is still out from his recent surgery to fix his lateral meniscus on his right knee, which has the Pelicans experiencing a difficult season. JJ Reddick also helped the Pelicans come out with a win tonight as he scored 15 points, exciting the crowd with a buzzer-beater to end the first half. Reddick as of tonight has 1,799 three-pointers in his career making him now 16th on the all-time list moving past all-star Klay Thompson.