2016 is rapidly approaching it’s end and the holiday season is in full swing. That means colder weather, shorter days, getting fat eating lots of food, spending way too much time with family, burning through money for presents for people like your great aunt that you haven’t spoken to in 15 years, a myriad of excuses to drink and thankfully SPORTS! Yes, there are lots of sports during the holiday times to help us through the most depressing wonderful time of the year!

In fact, holidays are some of the best times to watch sports in general. To get everyone in the holiday spirit and give you hope for what’s to come, we have ranked the Top 5 Best Holidays for Sports. Factors that went into the rankings include: who is playing (quality of the game), game importance, how many games, quality of the holiday, and sports importance. So here we go, the countdown of the definitive Top 5 Best Holiday’s for Sports that absolutely nobody can argue.

Number 5 – Labor Day

Labor Day is all about beginnings. The beginning of fall. The beginning of football season. And the beginning of these rankings. To kick off our countdown of Top Sports Holidays  we have Labor Day at number 5. Labor Day weekend marks the first games of College Football each Belk-College-Kickoffyear, and the transition of Pre-Season to Regular Season NFL games. Lots of great match-ups happen each year in College Football, with the Chick-Fil-A Kickoff, Belk College Kickoff, and other marquee games that match-up top teams from top conferences. Sure, there aren’t very many games played on actual Labor Day. But it’s a three day weekend and the return of American’s favorite sport. Admit it, you do nothing this weekend but watch football.

Number 4 – Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day

Yeah, bet you weren’t expecting this holiday. But this holiday packs a serious sports punch. In 2017 there are 7 NHL games, 22 Men’s NCAA Basketball games, and 9 NBA games. And while this holiday falls on a Monday (the third of every January to be specific), the weekend before is the Divisional Round of the NFL Playoffs. Teams are literally playing for their season. Everything is on the line. Also the NCAA Men’s Basketball season is coming to an end so every game matters there, too. Factor in the fact that it’s a federal holiday (most people are off that Monday), you are going to have a lot of choices and great games to watch that Monday to cap off your 3 day weekend.

Number 3 – Thanksgiving

The Three F’s of Thanksgiving: Family, Food, Football. It actually might be 4 F’s with the rise in popularity of Friendsgiving. But any holiday that is defined by sports is going to get mentioned in the Top 5 and Thanksgiving is no exception. This tradition has been around since 1937 when George A. Richards bought the Detroit Lions and wanted a way to promote them with no competition. It worked, and the rest is history as they say. The Cowboys joined the tradition in 1966, with both the Cowboys and Lions playing afternoon games. Recently the NFL expanded the day to include a third thanksgivinggame without a permanent opponent for the prime time spot. The entire presentation for these games are also outstanding, as most games have a great halftime performance and singer for the national anthem. It’s hard to beat the entertainment that occurs because of these games on Thanksgiving. Almost every family in American has watched football at some point on this day. There is not a better way to ignore your family and have another excuse to drink than sports. That is something to be thankful for indeed.

Number 2 – Christmas Day

It doesn’t get much better than sports on Christmas Day. When people think of Christmas Day sports, the NBA immediately comes to mind. And for good reason. The NBA has had a monopoly on Christmas Day since its second season in 1947. That’s a long standing tradition. While the NBA doesn’t have fixed teams playing like the NFL, they do nba-feet-christmas-day-recap-2014-01have multiple games and feature the best teams and players. Typically there is a rematch of the previous year’s NBA Finals. And don’t forget about the pageantry. Teams and players often wear cool swag and nothing is off limits: jerseys, head gear, socks, and shoes. Oh the shoes. Some of the most ridiculous coolest shoes and popular shoes are worn by super star players on Christmas Day. But enough about the NBA, as Christmas Day also features in rare cases like 2016, NFL games! That’s right, when Christmas is on a Sunday, the NFL often has games. This year there are 2. Also, don’t forget that Christmas Eve typically has the Hawaii Bowl for College Football.

Number 1 – New Year’s

There are two very good reasons Christmas Day isn’t number 1: championships and football. With all due respect to the NBA, football is king in America. And for College Football in America, everything is on the line during New Year’s. Okay, we are cheating here. We are combining New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day. But it doesn’t matter, this holiday is the best and it isn’t all that close. Actually, we are even adding in Jan 2nd. The dates sometimes get moved depending on what day of the week New Year’s falls on for TV ratings. So because of that we feel justified in adding in a couple of days.houston-press-bowls

New Year’s bowls are part of a long college football tradition. And usually, these bowls match some of the best teams from each conference against each other. And since 2014, the College Football Playoff Semi-Final games also occur on New Year’s. The Outback Bowl, Citrus Bowl, TaxSlayer Bowl, Cotton Bowl, Orange Bowl, Rose Bowl, and Sugar Bowl are all played. Some of the greatest games ever played are associated with some of those bowls. And with the playoffs, there is even more on the line with the Fiesta Bowl and Chick-Fil-A Bowl serving as the semifinal games. The pride, the passion, the championships, the quality of teams, the amount of games being played. New Year’s is king for sports holidays.

To really appreciate how awesome these sports holiday’s are, check out our list of the Top 5 Worst Sports Day’s!

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