With the 2022-23 NBA schedule set to be released within the next few weeks, some key games are already starting to be reported.
Games on Christmas Day are always a pinnacle of the NBA season, as the league has showcased some of the league’s best talents and teams on this day every year.
This upcoming season, All-Stars such as Nikola Jokic, Devin Booker and Chris Paul could all be on the floor in the same game, as Nuggets reporter Mike Singer reported on Sunday afternoon that the first draft of the 2022-23 NBA season has the Phoenix Suns visiting the Denver Nuggets on Christmas Day.
While changes can always be made to the schedule, especially since everything is still unofficial, the league usually does not change their initial schedule for December 25.
The Phoenix Suns are coming off a 2021-22 season in which they won a franchise record 64 games, but they failed to advance past the Western Conference Semifinals, losing to the Dallas Mavericks in seven games.
Chris Paul, Devin Booker, Deandre Ayton and Mikal Bridges make up one of the best core units in the entire league and with the Suns adding both Josh Okogie and Damion Lee to their bench, Phoenix should have more depth than they did a season ago. Dario Saric should also be ready to go after tearing his ACL in the 2021 NBA Finals.
As for the Denver Nuggets, they finished 48-34 this past season with both Jamal Murray and Michael Porter Jr., two of their Top-3 players, missing either all of or basically all of the season. Nikola Jokic once again proved why he is one of the best overall talents in the league, as he carried the Nuggets to the playoffs as the 6-seed in the Western Conference and won his second consecutive MVP award.
Now, with Murray and Porter Jr. returning from injuries, as well as a revamped roster with added depth in Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Ish Smith, Bruce Brown and DeAndre Jordan, the Nuggets seem to be making their intentions of wanting to be a real championship threat clear. Winning at least 40 games for the last six seasons, Denver has suddenly become a common name to see near the top of the Western Conference standings.
This past year, Phoenix defeated Denver two out of three times, winning one game on the road and one game at home. The Nuggets’ lone win against the Suns last season came in their very first game of the season.
The Nuggets last played on Christmas Day during the 2020-21 season, as they fell 121-108 against the Los Angeles Clippers. The Suns played on Christmas Day last season, losing 116-107 at home to the Golden State Warriors.
Denver is 1-6 all-time in games played on December 25 and Phoenix is 12-7. These two teams have never faced off before on Christmas Day.