What is the most important part of Thanksgiving? Is it the turkey? Is it the filling or the sauce? Is it family? Maybe it’s a combination of all of these things, but without football on Turkey Day, there would be only a fraction of the festivities. But what about basketball? Why are there no NBA games on such a big sports day?
Thanksgiving and Football: A Match Made in Heaven
The NFL has become synonymous with America’s most famous holiday. In every household across the country During the preparation, the feast and the post-meal coma, a football match is sure to be on TV in the background.
The NFL is just the major sports leagues in the midst of their season. The NBA is just over a month away and for the first time since the start of the season there will be no games on the fourth Thursday of November.
So why not show the NBA games on a day when the entire nation will be in front of their television sets?
That may be due to the league’s desire to give its players a rest, considering the NBA Christmas Day roster is always pretty extensive. So having a day off after a month and a half of incessant procedures is very welcome for the top teams in the leagues.
While rest may be important, there is a much more basic and simple reason that the NBA doesn’t play on Thanksgiving. The NFL has a monopoly on TV ratings during Turkey Day. Those who don’t watch the Charlie Brown special Thanksgiving in the evening watch football.
It doesn’t even matter if the family isn’t from a pigskin-obsessed family, there’s a good chance that lions or cowboys will appear on TV. why? Because it is a tradition and what is Thanksgiving without tradition?
The NFL is a ratings beast on Turkey Day
Last year’s Dallas-Washington game drew more than 30 million viewers, Which had the highest number of viewers before the postseason last season. This was the 17th largest audience for an NFL Thanksgiving Day game. The best ratings game came on Turkey Day in 1993 when Dolphins played Cowboys in front of a television audience of 38.4 million.
The Detroit Lions began the tradition of NFL games nearly a century ago. In 1934, Lions owner GA Richards A Thanksgiving game against the Chicago Bears, the two-time champions, was scheduled for November 29 of that year. The Lions have hosted 80 Thanksgiving games since then, going from 37 to 42-2.
The Dallas Cowboys followed suit in 1966 when they played their first game on Thanksgiving, defeating the Cleveland Browns 26-14 at the Cotton Bowl. They have played every day in Turkey since then except for two years, 1975 and 1977.
The Lions and the Bears will begin the festivities at 12:30 p.m. ET, followed by the Cowboys and the Raiders at 4:30 p.m. ET, and Saints and the Bills will be the nightly cover to finish the day of Marathon Football on Thanksgiving.
The NBA will have to wait until Christmas to get their time in the holiday spotlight. The Knicks will host the Hawks to start the day, while the Bucks and Celtics will follow. In the West, he will face the Suns Warriors, while the Lakers host the Nets and the Mavericks travel to Utah to face the Jazz in the last game of the Christmas roster.