ESPN and NBA are hoping Santa Claus will deliver a ratings slam dunk
on Christmas as the cable sports network and broadcast brethren ABC
offer five live NBA games on Dec. 25.
With matchups featuring
some of the league's most popular teams -- including a marquee matchup
between LeBron James's Miami Heat and Kobe Bryant's Los Angeles Lakers
-- ESPN senior director of programming and acquisitions Doug White said
the league is poised to attract a significant number of NBA fanatics and
"We look at Christmas in very much the same
vein as the NFL treats Thanksgiving," he said. "A lot of people are home
that day relaxing and watching television, and we thought that would be
a great time to provide great content for fans."