NBA on Christmas Day predictions: Knicks have chance to bust out
The Christmas NBA schedule is loaded from noon until late night with five games.
Well focus on three of these matchups, starting with the early tip-off from the Big Apple.
Bucks vs. Knicks (noon)
The Bucks seek their fourth win this season against the Knicks as the teams square off at Madison Square Garden.
These teams hooked up on Saturday as the Bucks cruised past the Knicks, 130-111, as 2.5-point favorites. Giannis Antetokounmpo scored 28 points as the Bucks knocked down 16 3-pointers.
The Bucks picked up their seventh straight win and improved to 10-2 against the spread in the past 12 games as a single-digit favorite.
The Knicks have responded well off a loss this season by going 9-2, including a perfect 4-0 mark at home off a defeat.
Since 2017, the Knicks have stumbled to a 1-4 mark on Christmas Day, so this is a good opportunity for them to bust this trend and to finally beat the Bucks.
Lets take the points with New York in the opening matchup on Christmas.
Warriors vs. Nuggets (2:30 p.m.)
This will be an early local tip-off at Ball Arena as the Nuggets return home from their road trip to face the Warriors.
Denver has won four consecutive games, including pulling off a three-game sweep of its road trip at Toronto, Brooklyn and Charlotte.
The Nuggets failed to cover in their final win over the Hornets as 11-point favorites, but Denver held Charlotte to 35 points in the second half.
Golden State has caught fire following a slow start with five straight victories, including last Tuesdays 132-126 overtime triumph over Boston.
The Warriors latest win came over Portland on Saturday as Klay Thompson led Golden State with 28 points.
Denver has captured four straight meetings with Golden State since the Warriors bounced the Nuggets from the playoffs in 2022.
Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry drives the ball during the first half of the team’s NBA basketball game against the Portland Trail Blazers. APThe Nuggets held off the Warriors, 108-105, as 4.5-point favorites in their most recent matchup on Nov. 8.
The Warriors are 0-6 straight-up in their past six games as a road underdog, even though Golden State has covered four times.
Lets lay the points with Denver at home here to keep up its dominance of Golden State.
Celtics at Lakers (5 p.m.)
Amazingly, the Celtics and Lakers are meeting on Christmas for the first time since 2008.
The two old rivals face off at Crypto.com Arena as the Celtics offense is hotter than a fireplace in a Christmas cabin.
Boston scored 144 points in a blowout of Sacramento, then the Celtics followed that effort up with a 145-point spot against the Clippers on Saturday.
The Celtics knocked down 47 3-pointers in the two victories, as Boston has won seven of eight of games since losing to Indiana in the In-Season Tournament quarterfinals.
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The Lakers are back home after snapping a four-game slide in Saturdays 129-120 victory as Oklahoma City as 3.5-point underdogs.
LeBron James led the Lakers with 40 points as LA shot 16 of 32 from 3-point range.
Los Angeles is playing only its second home game in nearly three weeks as the Lakers lost their last game at Crypto.com Arena to the Knicks last Monday.
Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James, right, drives as Oklahoma City Thunder guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander defends during the first half of an NBA basketball game Saturday, Dec. 23, 2023. APThe Lakers have excelled at home by winning nine of 12, and this will mark the second time that LA is a home underdog this season.
Boston beat Los Angeles in overtime twice last season, including the infamous non-foul call when James was driving for the potential game-winning layup to win in the final seconds of regulation at TD Garden.
Lets back the Lakers here as a home dog to slow down the Celtics.
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