Knicks-76ers Christmas game draws highest noon viewership in 11 Years

Joel Embiid, Julius Randle, New York Knicks
Dec 25, 2022; New York, New York, USA; Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid (21) reacts after a basket in front of New York Knicks forward Julius Randle (30) during the second half at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Knicks‘ box-office appeal is why they hold the most Christmas Day games in the NBA.

And it showed again this year despite Sunday’s loss to the Philadephia 76ers, which is now part of a current four-game slide following an eight-game winning streak.

The Knicks-76ers drew an average of 4,036,000 viewers, up 38 percent from their Christmas Day win over rival Atlanta Hawks last year, according to ESPN. It was the most-watched NBA Christmas game in the noon window since 2011.

The Knicks led by as many as 14 points but failed to hold on to their lead, allowing the 76ers, on a barrage of three-pointers led by Georges Niang, to spring a comeback for a 119-112 escape act.

The loss dropped the Knicks’ all-time Christmas Day record to 23-32.

On Tuesday night, the Knicks suffered another meltdown on Luka Doncic’s historic night in Dallas.

The Knicks became the first team to lose while leading by nine with 35 seconds or fewer remaining. Doncic recorded the first 60-21-10 performance in NBA history to will the Mavericks to an epic comeback.

Quentin Grimes scored a career-high 33 points for the Knicks, who played without Jalen Brunson (hip injury), and RJ Barrett, who left 1:36 into the game with a lacerated finger.

Despite their fourth loss, the Knicks remained tied for sixth in the Eastern Conference. Their massive fan base makes them an appealing team in the playoffs. But they have only reached the playoffs only twice over the last 10 years.

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