Have you been naughty or nice?
Looking for Christmas TV that doesn't involve Will Ferrell in an elf costume? (Blasphemy!) We break down Christmas and Boxing Day sports for you, along with last night's highlights. Just in case you need an excuse to watch TV to avoid the awkward Trump vs Clinton discussion with Aunt Gertrude, the game times are below.
Merry Christmas from our family to yours,
The LNG Team
- The best is yet to come. The 2016 NBA Hall of Fame Nominees have been announced. The nominees must be retired for four years to be considered. The inductees will be announced in September. Some of the notable nominees are:
- Shaquille “Shaq” O’Neal: Coming out of Louisiana State University Shaq possessed size and athleticism never before seen in the NBA (7’1,” 325 pounds). Throughout his 18-year career, Shaq became one of the most dominate forces in the league.
- Allen Iverson: A guard, Allen Iverson was known for his tenacity for his stature (6 feet tall, 165 pounds). Iverson had ability to score with ease and play incredible defense. He played two years at Georgetown and was the first overall pick in 1996 draft by Philadelphia 76ers.
- Yao Ming: Hailing from China, Yao Ming was one of the tallest players in the league at 7’6.” Using his physical abilities became unstoppable as a center for the Houston Rockets. His career was cut short by injuries but the impact he had on introducing NBA to the biggest market in the world (China) is unmeasurable.
- But wait, there's more. Golden State Warriors are on a record setting pace with 26 wins thus far in the season. (The record is 72 season wins set by 1996 Chicago Bulls.) On the contrary, Philadelphia 76ers are 1-29. Ouch.
- Cash is king. St. Louis Cardinals sign starting pitcher Mike Leake to a five-year, $80 million contract
- He's on QB's naughty list. Oakland Raiders safety Charles Woodson announced he will retire after this season. Woodson was a Heisman winner at the University of Michigan in 1997, drafted fourth overall by the Raiders in 1998, ranks fifth with 65 interceptions, has intercepted 41 different quarterbacks and has a Super Bowl ring from a win in 2010 with the Packers.
BOXING DAY SPORTS
In case you need another excuse to watch sports. Boxing Day is a holiday celebrated in most of the Commonwealth Nations. Boxing Day marks the beginning of a five-day test cricket match between Australia and India in Melbourne, Australia.
I'm on a boat. The day after Christmas also begins the Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race, which is widely considered one of the most difficult sailing races in the world due to the high winds and difficult seas associated with the Bass Strait and Tasman Sea. While the race is only about 720 miles, each year nearly 20% of the flotilla (fleet) retires before finishing.
- Pajama Party. If you want to partake in Boxing Day celebrations from the comfort of your couch, catch these Premier League games Saturday morning:
- Stoke City vs Manchester United 7:30 am (EST), on NBCSN
- Manchester City vs Sunderland, 10 am (EST), on NBCSN
- The NFL selected this season’s Pro Bowl roster. The Pro Bowl is the all-star game for American football which is played on Jan 31 in Hawaii. (the weekend before the Super Bowl – which is Feb.7) Click here for the full player list but a few notables include:
- Kansas City Chiefs’ Eric Berry is making his fourth appearance. This appearance is a year after beating cancer. Touchdown dance.
- Oakland Raiders safety Charles Woodson is selected for the ninth time.
- Carolina Panthers lead with 10 players selected for the game
- University of Florida men’s basketball team beat Jacksonville 89-65 last night. The highlight of game was walk-on player Zach Hodskins who scored his first ever basket. Hodskins was born without a hand on his left arm.
- What is a walk-on player? An athlete who has not been recruited or invited to try out for a team. You would simply call them a walk-on. In this case above, Hodskins wasn’t invited to join the team, tried out anyway and made it. Booya.
A FULL SLATE OF NBA GAMES TO WATCH AFTER OPENING PRESENTS. HEY IT’S A TRADITION!
Christmas Day NBA games (all times are EST)
- New Orleans Pelicans vs Miami Heat, Noon on ESPN
- Chicago Bulls vs Oklahoma City Thunder, 2:30 pm on ESPN
- Cleveland Cavaliers vs Golden State Warriors, 5 pm on ABC. Game note: This is a rematch of last season’s NBA finals
- San Antonio Spurs vs Houston Rockets, 8 pm on ESPN. Game note: a battle for NBA supremacy in Texas.
- Los Angeles Clippers vs Los Angeles Lakers, 10:30 pm on ESPN. Game note: this game is bragging rights of the Staples Center, where both teams play home games.