There’s nothing sweeter for an up-and-coming NBA team than to get one of the coveted spots on the league’s Christmas Day slate. If you can handle a break between games pitting the super teams around the league against one another, you may get lucky enough to receive a dose of Sixers in your life on December 25.
Friend of the blog and Rights to Ricky Sanchez co-host Spike Eskin shared the good news today, and he says the Sixers will play their division rivals, the New York Knicks, at Madison Square Garden on Christmas.
Been told that the Sixers will play the Knicks on Christmas Day at Madison Square Garden.— Spike Eskin (@SpikeEskin) August 9, 2017
This will call into question a possibly massive change to the Sixers’ broader schedule. The team typically heads out West around the Christmas holiday on their extended “Disney On Ice” trip, making room at Wells Fargo Center for some family entertainment. Though there are certainly other times to incorporate a road swing into a schedule, we might be in for a break from tradition.
While there has been a fair bit of grumbling about playing the Knicks instead of a team in a similar point on their progression arc, a la the Minnesota Timberwolves, this is a big sign: the Sixers have fucking arrived. It always helps that the Sixers come from a huge media market, but the league appears to be directly responding to the franchise’s uptick in talent and the excitement of the fan base.
Though things have stabilized a bit since Phil Jackson got the boot, the Knicks could look radically different by the time late December rolls around. For now, feel free to dream about Joel Embiid and Markelle Fultz roasting Kristaps Porzingis and Frank Ntilikina like chestnuts on an open fire.
We’ve reached out to the Sixers for comment on the matter, and we’ll update this story whenever we hear back from them.
This story is developing.