NBA Christmas Day

Canadian moment of the week: A look back at the best Canadian performances on Christmas Day

Tristan Thompson, Steve Nash and Andrew Wiggins have played a combined 12 times on Christmas (NBA Getty Images)

For the 11th straight season, the NBA will play five games on Christmas Day.

2018 marks the 12th consecutive year in which at least one Canadian player takes the floor on Christmas Day as Nik Stauskas (Missisauga, Ont.) and the Portland Trail Blazers visit the Utah Jazz at 10:30 p.m. ET to cap off a day full of action.

While the 12-year streak is impressive, the history of Canadians playing on Christmas Day goes back much further, and plenty of memorable performances have been put forth by some of Canada's best.

In the spirit of the holiday season, this week's "moment" is a look back to some of the more notable performances put forth by Canadians on Christmas Day.

Rick Fox, 1991

A Christmas debut to remember

In his rookie season, Rick Fox and the Boston Celtics travelled to take on the defending champion Bulls and reigning league MVP Michael Jordan.

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While it was a rough overall day for the Celtics, who suffered a 22-point loss, Fox made the most of his opportunity on the floor, scoring 21 points (on 7-for-13 shooting) and grabbing three rebounds in 28 minutes of action. Fox outscored all but one of the five Hall-of-Famers that played that day (Scottie Pippen).

Fox would go on to win All-Rookie Second Team honours that season and play on Christmas Day four more times in his 13-year career. He also won three NBA titles as a member of the Lakers.

Steve Nash, 2003

A double-double in ARCO

The Sacramento Kings lost just seven games at ARCO Arena in the 2003-04 season - one of those losses came to Steve Nash and the Dallas Mavericks on Christmas Day.

Dirk Nowitzki scored a game-high 31 points, but Nash was the maestro that set things up, finishing with a double-double of 14 points and 11 assists as the Mavs earned a 111-103 win over the home team.

It was the second of six Christmas Day games for the eventual two-time MVP, who averaged 14.3 points, 8.8 assists and 2.7 rebounds on the holiday; his teams finished with an even record of 3-3.

Tristan Thompson, 2016

A dominant day on the offensive glass

NBA Champion Tristan Thompson has played on Christmas Day four times in his eight-year career, with his lone win coming in a rematch of the 2016 Finals.

In a game in which every point mattered, Thompson finished with eight points and eight rebounds (six offensive) as the Cavs went on to defeat Kevin Durant and the Golden State Warriors 109-108.

Kelly Olynyk, 2016

An efficient Christmas Day matinee

Kelly Olynyk delivered an impressive performance in his lone appearance on the Christmas holiday.

While it's tough for some to get going for a game that tips at noon the 7-footer finished with 16 points, two rebounds and two assists in just over 23 minutes off the bench. Olynyk was extremely efficient, shooting 7-for-9 from the field and 2-for-3 from downtown.

His performance helped propel the Celtics to a 119-114 win over their division rival Knicks.

Andrew Wiggins, 2017

A balanced night under the STAPLES lights

Though Andrew Wiggins made his Christmas debut with the Wolves in 2016, it wasn't until the following year where he would earn his first win on the holiday.

In last season's Christmas nightcap, Minnesota travelled to Los Angeles to take on a talented, young Lakers team. Wiggins' presence was felt in a number of ways as he finished the night with 16 points, five assists and four rebounds.

The Wolves outlasted the Lakers to improve to 21-13 on the season.

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