NBA Coach On Christmas Games: “It’s Like Christian Holidays Don’t Mean Anything To Them Anymore.”

  • Barry Rothbard

There will be five NBA games played on Christmas day this year, and it’s got Phil Jackson‘s stockings in a bunch.

When Jackson, the son of a minister, was asked by reporters how he felt about coaching on a day when most Americans will be sipping on spiked cider, he made it clear he’d rather be getting his zen on.

From ESPN Los Angeles:

“It’s like Christian holidays don’t mean anything to them anymore,” said Jackson. “We just go out and play and entertain the TV. It’s really weird.”

Apparently, it’s hard to gameplan for the Miami Heat when your children just unwrapped their new Xbox Kinect.

“Your little kids are putting batteries in toys to put their Christmas presents together, there’s all kinds of crazy stuff going on and now your head’s got to get focused on a game in the middle of the afternoon on Christmas Day? That game is just real hard to measure how to bring focus to it.”

Fair points indeed. But no fans are going to feel much sympathy for Jackson or his team: after all, people need something to distract them from the awkwardness that can sometimes befall family holiday gatherings. For Thanksgiving, you have the NFL. For Christmas, it’s the NBA.

Jackson has no plans of skipping Saturday’s 2 p.m. (PT) date with the Heat, stating that “it is what it is.” Commissioner David Stern, meanwhile, will not listen (or like) Jackson’s remarks, as the NBA gets very high ratings on the holiday.