How can the NBA not give the Atlanta Hawks a Christmas Day game?

Atlanta Hawks. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports
Atlanta Hawks. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports /

The NBA has released its Christmas Day schedule and it is no surprise that the Atlanta Hawks are not part of the slate of games. They were given a game last season where they took on the New York Knicks at Maddison Square Gardens.

Unfortunately, they were unable to play the team that they wanted as they were in the grips of a team-wide Covid-19 crisis does not do them justice. The story of Kevin Huerter sitting in the car park outside of the venue taking a Covid test and failing it, meaning he could not have a Christmas Day game in the city he grew up in.

These games mean a lot to the people who participate in them and this season the five-game slate has a different ring to it. The champion Golden State Warriors take on the upcoming Memphis Grizzlies. The Milwaukee Buck will play the Boston Celtics, and the Suns will play the Nuggets. All of these teams deserve to be there. However, the other games are strange.

The Atlanta Hawks deserve a Christmas Day game over some of the other teams.

The other two games on the slate appear not to be given on merit but on the NBA’s ability to make money. The Los Angeles Lakers travel to take on the Dallas Mavericks. The Mavericks deserve to play on Christmas Day, the Lakers missed the playoffs last season. They are not shaping up to be a very good team this season either.

Then there are the Knicks. They get to host another Christmas Day game despite the fact that they were much worse than the Hawks last season. Despite this, they get to host the Philadelphia 76ers in what is sure to be a well-attended game.

The Hawks just had an injury-riddled season and then made some big moves. They are going to be one of the best teams in the Eastern Conference. They are also going to generate a huge level of interest in the NBA with their improved defense and greater star power.

Next. The Hawks are about the most hated backcourt. dark

The Hawks were robbed on their first Christmas Day game in years last season by Covid. Surely the NBA, with what has transpired this offseason could have given the Hawks another chance to show what they are really made of. Unfortunately, this is not the case.