Watch NBA 360 live on Sky Sports Arena or Mix from 6pm on Monday night, followed by Milwaukee Bucks @ Atlanta Hawks and Utah Jazz @ Los Angeles Lakers; listen to the latest episode of Heatcheck on Spotify or watch in full on the Sky Sports YouTube channel
Monday 17 January 2022 19:09, UK
As part of the NBA's landmark 75th season, NBA 360 is returning to Sky Sports for Monday's bumper schedule of Martin Luther King Jr. Day action.
Starting from 6pm on Monday, Sky Sports will offer simultaneous NBA 360 coverage of six live games, with two more full live encounters to follow throughout the evening.
The early action includes two of the season's surprise packages going head to head, as the Chicago Bulls travel to Memphis to take on the high-flying Grizzlies.
Elsewhere, the Brooklyn Nets travel to take on another team exceeding expectations, the Cleveland Cavaliers, with Kyrie Irving set to be available for the road game.
At the conclusion of NBA 360, there is full live coverage of an Eastern Conference Finals rematch, as the champion Milwaukee Bucks take on the Atlanta Hawks, before LeBron James' Los Angeles Lakers host the Utah Jazz.
In the latest episode of Sky Sports Heatcheck, Mo Mooncey and three-time NBA champion BJ Armstrong picked out what they are most looking forward to.
"It might be my favourite day of the year," Mooncey said.
"Not only, for the fans in the UK, there are games starting to tip off at 5:30pm, but then if you're a fan of the NFL, it's like an NBA version of RedZone. Because it's going to be flicking through the best of the action from the best of the league."
The Bulls' meeting with the Grizzlies is the standout fixture of the six NBA 360 games, with both teams competing for top spot in their respective conferences.
Despite a three-game losing streak, the Bulls remain top of the Eastern Conference. They look set to be without Zach LaVine, who left Friday's loss to the Golden State Warriors with a knee injury but is not expected to miss "significant time" following an MRI scan.
The Grizzlies' 11-game winning streak came to an end on Friday against the Dallas Mavericks, but that run has put them third in the West Conference with a significant gap to the fifth-placed Mavericks.
"There's one game that I have circled that I'm going to really tune into," Armstrong said.
"I think right now it's time for these teams to either say they are pretenders, or are they contenders? And I think this is a great measuring stick to find out who's who and what's what.
"I think it should be a terrific game, we're going to see a lot of dunks, a lot of great plays, but I think we have two teams that right now are playing great basketball, their role players are playing their roles, both teams are well coached, and we know there are a lot of stars. I'm really going to watch that game with a lot of interest."
The New York Knicks have failed to maintain the high standards they set for themselves last season, with the Madison Square Garden faithful showing signs of frustration in recent weeks.
The tense atmosphere at the garden, along with the highlight-play potential LaMelo Ball and the Charlotte Hornets are bringing to the occasion, could make for fascinating viewing, according to Mooncey.
"Then we've got the Charlotte Hornets visiting Madison Square Garden, LaMelo Ball, you know the best players come to shine at MSG," Mooncey said.
"And also, the Knicks fans have been unhappy with the Knicks, they've been booing them, Julius Randle's been going back and forth with them, so if he has another bad game, and LaMelo Ball's throwing lobs, and Miles Bridges is flying through the sky and throwing them down, it's must-see TV."