Posts Tagged ‘All-Star Saturday Night’

Star-studded Three-Point Shootout field highlights All-Star Saturday Night

VIDEO: Star-studded field for Foot Locker Three-Point Contest

HANG TIME BIG CITY — Forget East versus West. After two years of NBA All-Star Saturday Night pitting one conference against the other, this time, it’s personal. And for once, long range marksmanship may trump dunks as the center of attraction.

NBA All-Star 2015Conference affiliations will be out the window on Saturday, Feb. 14, for the State Farm All-Star Saturday Night at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y. This year, it’s every man and woman for themselves in the annual Saturday night showcase.

In the Degree Shooting Stars competition, the two-time defending championship team of Chris Bosh, Dominique Wilkins and Swin Cash will reunite. Although this is a shooting competition, Team Davis, made up of Anthony Davis, Scottie Pippen and Elena Delle Donne, will have unbelievable length. Other participants include Golden State’s Stephen Curry and his father, retired guard Dell.

Eight players will compete in the Taco Bell Skills Challenge, a three-round, obstacle-course competition that tests dribbling, passing, agility and shooting skills. Seven of those players are point guards, including the defending champ, Utah’s Trey Burke, as well as All-Stars Kyle Lowry, Jeff Teague and John Wall. The lone non-point guard in the field is Chicago’s Jimmy Butler, an All-Star swingman with well-rounded skills.

The Sprite Slam Dunk field was announced a few weeks ago. Giannis Antetokounmpo, Zach LaVine, Victor Oladipo and Mason Plumlee bring an energetic edge to the proceedings this season. Brooklyn’s Plumlee is the lone active NBA player with New York ties participating on Saturday night.

Yet even with the loaded dunk field, it may be tough to top the Foot Locker Three-Point Contest, which is this year stocked with sharpshooters …

Marco Belinelli, Spurs — Last year’s defending champ, Belinelli has played just 30 games this season due to injury. Belinelli has the lowest 3-point percentage (38.2) of any player in the Three-Point Contest field.

Stephen Curry, Warriors — Drained 10 3-pointers Wednesday night in a 51-point performance against the Mavs. Earlier this season, became fastest player in NBA history to make 1,000 career 3s.

Klay Thompson, Warriors — At 44.6 percent, Thompson trails only Korver in 3-point percentage this season. Thompson and Curry are the only teammates ever to combine for 400 3-pointers in back-to-back seasons.

James Harden, Rockets — Fifth this season in 3-pointers made and attempts, and the NBA’s leading scorer at 27 points.

Kyrie Irving, Cavaliers — Other than Belinelli, Irving has the least made treys in the field, with 100. But last year’s All-Star Game MVP has a flair for the dramatic, and he knocked down 11 3s in his 55-point performance a few weeks back against Portland.

Kyle Korver, Hawks — On pace to have the greatest 3-point shooting season in NBA history, currently leading the NBA in 3-point accuracy at 53.2 percent. Korver is attempting to become the first player in history among qualifiers to shoot at least 50 percent from the field, 50 percent from beyond the arc and 90 percent from the free-throw line.

Wesley Matthews, Trail Blazers — Leads the NBA in 3-pointers made (151) and attempted (375). Has had 11 games this season where he made at least 5 3-pointers.

J.J. Redick, Clippers — Has made 114 3-pointers, putting him on track to break his previous high of 165. Currently shooting a career-high 43.2 percent on 3s.

State Farm NBA All-Star Saturday Night will be televised live exclusively on TNT on Saturday, Feb. 14, from the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York.

VIDEO: All-Star guards highlight Taco Bell Skills Challenge

All-Star Saturday Night participants to be announced tonight

HANG TIME BIG CITY — All-Star may be about the game, but you can’t have an All-Star weekend without the bonus features.

State Farm All-Star Saturday NightAnd while we already know who will be playing in the NBA All-Star Game, tonight we find out who’s participating in State Farm All-Star Saturday Night, the annual collection of contests where we discern the best dunkers, shooters and passers in the NBA.

TNT will televise the announcement of the 2015 State Farm All-Star Saturday Night participants during a special one-hour TNT NBA Tip-Off presented by pre-game show tonight at 7 p.m. (ET). The telecast will include the announcement of the Degree Shooting Stars, Taco Bell Skills Challenge and Foot Locker Three-Point Contest participants, as well as a preview of Sprite Slam Dunk which will include the previously announced participants Giannis Antetokounmpo, Zach LaVine, Victor Oladipo and Mason Plumlee.

The dunk contest participants are a collection of some of the greatest young dunkers in the NBA. LaVine, in particular, has wowed throughout the summer and first half of the season with numerous highlight dunks. In the Shooting Stars, look for Dominique Wilkins to return and try for a three-peat, though he has teamed with Chris Bosh the last two years.

While the dunk contest is historically All-Star Saturday night’s showstopping event, this year the Three-Point contest could be one for the ages. Nine of the top 15 three-point shooters of all-time (by percentage) are active in the NBA today. Atlanta’s Kyle Korver currently leads the NBA while shooting 53.2 percent on threes. Korver already holds the career season three-point percentage, when he connected in 2009-10 at a .5364 rate.

Golden State’s Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson have been called the greatest shooting backcourt of all-time. Curry recently all but confirmed his participation in the shootout, saying, “I’m doing that until I win it. I’m salty about that.” Thompson is behind only Korver, Curry and Portland’s Wesley Matthews in three-pointers made this season.

Other three-point specialists this season include Portland’s Damian Lillard, as well as Houston’s James Harden. Last year’s three-point Shootout winner, San Antonio’s Marco Belinelli, has battled injuries this season.

All-Star Saturday Night will be televised live exclusively on TNT on Saturday, February 14, from the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York.

All-Star Saturday Night Revisited

LOS ANGELES — Blake Griffin wasn’t the only man on center stage here Saturday night. He’s just the only one crazy enough to jump over the hood of a car.

A night that ended with Griffin standing on the hood of a Kia as he won the 26th Sprite Slam Dunk Contest was the capper on an at times brilliant All-Star Saturday night.

James Jones left a surprise winner, as did Steph Curry and Team Atlanta. The biggest winners, though, had to be all of us. All-Star Weekend hasn’t seen a Saturday night as satisfying as this one was in some time. And lucky for you, we’ve wrapped it all up in a nice box for you (courtesy of the crack crew in the HT audio-visual club) with All-Star Saturday night revisited: