Why are there no NBA games on Thanksgiving?

There will be no NBA games on Thursday, November 24th. All 30 teams in the league will be standing idle to mark the Thanksgiving holiday in the United States.

The Thanksgiving holiday marks the second time in November that no NBA teams are in action, the first being Election Day in the United States, which fell on Tuesday, November 8th.

Why are there no NBA games on Thanksgiving in America? Although the choice was made consciously, it wasn’t fully explained why.

Why are there no NBA games on Thanksgiving?

The 2022-23 NBA season marks the 12th consecutive year without NBA games on Thanksgiving. There is no formal explanation as to why games are not scheduled on public holidays, but as an annual event it has been widely accepted as the norm.

Thanksgiving is one of four isolated days when the NBA doesn’t host games, presumably because the holiday hosts three NFL football games, including a primetime offering that would conflict with the NBA’s games.

Rather than playing on the Thanksgiving holiday, the NBA is focusing on Christmas, a holiday that traditionally features five games spread throughout the day.

The NBA last hosted Thanksgiving games on November 25, 2010, a TNT doubleheader that featured a meeting between the Wizards and Hawks, followed by a game between the Kings and Clippers.

Due to the 2011 NBA lockout, the 2011-12 NBA season didn’t start until the Christmas holidays, meaning there were no games in the month of November. From that point forward, the NBA has not held any games on Thanksgiving.

Days without 2022-23 NBA regular season games

  • November 8, 2022 – Election Day
  • Nov. 24, 2022 – Thanksgiving (USA)
  • December 24, 2022 – Christmas Eve
  • 17-22 February 2023 – NBA All-Star Weekend in Salt Lake City
  • April 3, 2023 – Men’s NCAA National Championship Game

NBA schedule after Thanksgiving

The NBA returns Friday with a full schedule of games.

Friday 25th Nov

Game time (ET) National TV
Timber wolves versus hornets 5.00
76 vs. Magic 19.00
Trail Blazers vs. Knicks 19:30 o’clock
Kings vs Celtics 8:00 pm
Networks vs. pacemakers 8:00 pm
Magician against heat 8:00 pm
Falcons vs Missiles 8:00 pm
Pelicans vs Grizzlies 8:00 pm NBA TV
Cavaliers against bucks 8:00 pm
Bulls vs. Thunder 8:00 pm
Lakers versus Spurs 8:00 pm
Pistons vs Suns 9.00
Jazz vs Warrior 10:00 p.m
Nuggets vs Clippers 10:30 p.m NBA TV


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