Dallas Mavericks star Luka Doncic will make his Christmas Day debut in opposition to the world champion Los Angeles Lakers as a part of a blockbuster slate of tentative vacation video games, sources informed ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.
The NBA is tentatively scheduled to open its 2020-21 season on Dec. 22. However Christmas Day will once more characteristic the NBA’s marquee video games to get the season jump-started.
Along with Doncic taking part in for the primary time on Christmas in opposition to LeBron James and the defending champs in Los Angeles (8 p.m. ET), Zion Williamson is slated to make his Christmas debut when the New Orleans Pelicans kick off the star-powered vacation video games with a go to to Miami to play the reigning Japanese Convention champion Heat (midday ET). The Pelicans performed on Christmas final 12 months, however an injured Williamson missed that contest in opposition to Denver.
After that sport, Stephen Curry makes his return to the Christmas stage when the Golden State Warriors go to Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Milwaukee Bucks (2:30 p.m. ET). Curry missed virtually all of final season following hand surgical procedure. Whereas he should play this season with out teammate Klay Thompson (out for the season after Achilles surgical procedure), Curry can have his new huge man, second general decide James Wiseman, to assist battle Antetokounmpo, the two-time MVP.
The Nets‘ star tandem of Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving is also in line to make its Christmas Day debut when Brooklyn faces the Boston Celtics (5 p.m. ET). The Nets enter the season with large expectations with Durant and Irving lastly taking part in collectively whereas being led by rookie head coach Steve Nash. Durant sat out all of final season whereas recovering from a ruptured proper Achilles suffered within the 2019 NBA Finals.
The NBA definitely will probably be hoping that Doncic and James will face one another within the showcase sport of the day, however James, 35, will probably be simply over 10 weeks faraway from serving to the Lakers win the championship in Sport 6 of the Finals over the Warmth on Oct. 11. The Lakers, who added Sixth Man of the 12 months Montrezl Harrell and Dennis Schroder in free company, might choose to ease James again into the season.
The LA Clippers will shut out the evening by touring to Denver to face the Nuggets (10:30 p.m. ET). When these two groups final confronted one another within the bubble in Orlando, Florida, in September, the Nuggets shocked the Clippers by erasing a 3-1 collection deficit and beating the favored decide to win all of it within the second spherical of the playoffs. That beautiful collapse led Clippers proprietor Steve Ballmer to half methods with coach Doc Rivers and change him with Ty Lue. Lue and a brand new teaching workers will hope to unlock the potential of Clippers stars Kawhi Leonard and Paul George.