Dwyane Wade Wants Christmas Day Games To Be ‘Earned’ By Teams Like All-Star Selections

The NBA’s Christmas Day slate this season features three very good games and a pair that don’t have nearly as much excitement thanks to injuries derailing the Warriors and Pelicans seasons.

In a season where there was the expectation of parity (and, thus far, that’s proven to be the case), it was more difficult for the schedule makers to dial in on exactly what would be the marquee matchups on a 10-team Christmas Day slate, and when you add in the injuries you get a pair of what we’ll call palate cleansing games between the Rockets and Warriors and the Pelicans and Nuggets.

The other three games, to be clear, are excellent, with Celtics-Raptors, Bucks-Sixers, and Lakers-Clippers all living up to the expectations of being big time games, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t a way to improve things. Dwyane Wade has such an idea, as he offered up his thoughts on Twitter that the Christmas Day games should be earned by the teams who play the best to start the season, something akin to All-Star selections for players.

The idea is good in theory. Give 10 of the best teams in the league the Christmas Day spotlight by picking them in, say, early December based on who is actually playing the best basketball. It would be fantastic and a way to reward teams that have been pleasant surprises to start the season — like, say the Miami Heat.

The problem with this, of course, is that it would be a logistical nightmare. That said, it is not impossible. The way to make Wade’s proposal a reality would be to give every team the days before and after Christmas off — they already get Christmas Eve off, so this isn’t an impossibility — to ensure no surprise back-to-backs. Then, in early December, you select the games that would otherwise be played later in the season and flex them into the five Christmas Day slots. They could even protect TNT from losing marquee games to ESPN by making the latter choose from games already on their schedule to flex into the Christmas slate.

Now, there would be the issue of some fans with season tickets being put out by the fact they wouldn’t know if their team will have a Christmas home game while making holiday plans in the months leading up. It would also cause some issues for fans that may plan travel around marquee games that could get moved — and teams would have to be prepared to issue refunds for those tickets if moved to Christmas. Still, for the general public and the league itself, it would make for an improvement. The NBA is the only game in town on Christmas, as the NFL and college football don’t play, and you could ensure all five games put the best teams against each other when the most eyeballs are on your sport.

Whether the league is willing to take this idea into consideration remains to be seen, but given their willingness to discuss schedule reform and a midseason tournament right now, this could have some legs.