For those of you who might not have known, the NBA All-star weekend went down recently. And boy, was it quite the show. From the skills challenge, 3 point contest, Kevin Hart’s hilarious introductions of the All-star teams’ players to the much anticipated, newly revamped All-Star game itself, The new look NBA All-Star weekend seemed an all-out success. In short, Los Angeles, the City of Angels was lit. This All-Star weekend was good for many things; a fire 3 point challenge, an even better high concept dunk contest, and what proved to be the cherry on top, a high energy and very competitive All-Star game with the “King” and his squad getting the W.
3 POINT CHALLENGE CONTEST
In today’s modern NBA game the 3 point shot is everything. You just can’t afford to live without it. Even the Bigs are madly involved with this movement (see Joel Embiid). This has eventually translated into giving birth to a thrilling All-Star 3 point contest. Even though Steph Curry chose not to take part this time around, there wasn’t any shortage of high ranking shooters. Eric Gordon, the Houston Rocket’s super 6th man was looking to retain his crown but was sadly unable to. 21-year-old Devin Booker of the Phoenix Suns surprised everyone, surviving Klay Thompson by dropping 28 in the final round which proved to be enough to bring him the gold.
Guess what? Another surprise. A replacement rookie from the Utah Jazz came, saw and conquered. Donovan Mitchell, who replaced the injured Aaron Gordon, came and showed why he was just meant to be there in the first place. The rookie came through with some electrifying dunks from start to finish, paying homage to both Darrel Griffith and Vince Carter on the road to champion by mimicking some of their most memorable dunks. He finished off Larry Nance Jr, in the final round, using Vince’s legendary 360 windmill. In a field of impressive dunkers, the kid, Mitchell, surely proved he deserved it.
THE ALL-STAR GAME ITSELF
The format overhaul was clearly successful. NBA Commissioner, Adam Silver, got everything right. The edge of competitiveness the 2018 All-Star game had, between Team Lebron and Team Steph, was unrivaled. No previous All-Star game has provided anything like it. As in, if you can believe this, the play of the game was a defensive play. Kevin Durant and Lebron James’ perfectly executed double team on Steph Curry at the very end to deny one of the game’s best shooters a chance to tie the game up with a three was simply sublime. That last play won the game. King James was fantastic all through, of course, his powers still ever so dominating in an outstanding 14 All-Star start. One short of Kobe Bryant’s record of 15. Oh yeah, by the way, the “King” also walked away with the MVP award. Long, live, the “KIng”.
All in all, it was definitely an NBA All-Star weekend worth remembering. Aside from Fergie’s weird rendition of the United States national anthem, everything looks to have sailed through without a hitch. We’re looking forward to more positive future changes such as these if it means increasing the excitement levels as much as they did this year at the Staples Center. Welcome new-look NBA All-Star weekend!