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This Day in Buffalo Sports History: The Braves vs. Clyde

     December 25, 1977 -- It's the quietest day in Buffalo's sports history. The Bills have never played a game on Christmas Day, although the NFL now does sometimes play on that particular holiday. The NHL has a mandated Christmas break, so the Sabres are always off.

     Who does that leave? Why, the Buffalo Braves. They played four games on Christmas Day, going 1-3.

     Let's take the last game as the highlight. The biggest star on the court that day was an unlikely one. Walt Frazier had been traded by the Knicks to Cleveland, and he was in the lineup for the Cavaliers for the first time that day. Somehow he looked seriously out of place in a Cleveland uniform. The Cavaliers also offered a familiar face on their roster in Elmore Smith.

     This was Year Eight for the Braves, and their last one in the NBA. Swen Nater took the opening tip, and knocked it to Randy Smith.

     The Braves dropped a 111-105 decision in Cleveland that day. It was the second of five straight losses. Buffalo finished 27-55 that season, and moved to San Diego the next year.

   For more on the Braves season of 1977-78, click here.

   Here's how part of the game looked:

--- Budd Bailey

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