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Your Guide to NBA All-Star Saturday

February 14, 2009 Leave a comment Go to comments


Well, that was fun.

Kevin Durant scored a T-Mobile Rookie Challenge (sponsored by T-Mobile) record 46 points, as the Sophomores (who apparently don’t figure in the naming of the actual game) beat the Rookies (or Freshmen), 122-116. The Sophomores have now beaten the Rookies eight consecutive years. Despite the game being played with less defense than Paul Westhead’s old Nuggets teams, John Hollinger of ESPN.com seems to have become a little hot and bothered by the action:


Durant, shown breaking out at the All-Star break.

…we were treated to a coming-out party from a rapidly ascending star — one who has garnered shockingly little attention until tonight. Kevin Durant‘s virtuoso 46-point explosion included 30 after the break, when he single-handedly rallied the Sophsfrom a 12-point deficit to win 122-116. His performance, on 17-of-25 shooting, was so dominant that virtually everyone who watched was left to conclude that Durant was playing in the wrong game.

Easy, slugger. Remember, this is the same game they let Arvydas Sabonis play in, even though he was old enough to be the father of his teammates. Wally Szczerbiak once scored 27 in this game. David Lee has scored 30 in this game. Darius Miles has been good for 20 before.

You get my point. No doubt, Durant is a star in the making. But, I REFUSE to call this his coming out party; a glorified garbage time game.


But here at notinhd.com, we want you to be fully prepared for the stage setter that is the All-Star Saturday night in the NBA. Did you know that H-O-R-S-E (or G-I-E-K-O) is not an official event? No wonder it’s being held outside. This must be a “probationary” All-Star weekend event. Here is our guide for the events, starting with the Skills Challenge.


PlayStation Skills Challenge

 Devin Harris: 6’3″ PG from the New Jersey Nets
Tony Parker: 6’2″ PG from the San Antonio Spurs
Derrick Rose: 6’3″ PG from the Chicago Bulls
Mo Williams: 6’1″ PG from the Cleveland Cavaliers

Finals: Devin Harris & Derrick Rose

Winner: Devin Harris


You’d think the easy choice here is Parker, the ever-improving spark plug to the Spurs offense. But did you know the last time he was in this event, he had the worst time ever recorded (45.5 seconds) when he competed in 2003? I still don’t know for sure if Williams can dribble a ball so Rose gets into the finals by default. Harris has the best mix of shot accuracy and ball handling, and is our favorite to win this coveted competition. Don’t count out Rose, who is probably pretty embarrassed at how badly he played compared to his fellow rookies during the night before.


Haier Shooting Stars


Team San Antonio: Tim Duncan, David Robinson, Becky Hammon (yes)
Team Detroit: Aaron Affalo, Bill Laimbeerand Katie Smith
Team Los Angeles: Derrick Fisher, Michael Cooper and Lisa Leslie
Team Phoenix: Leandro Barbosa, Dan Majerle and Tangela Smith

Finals: Team San Antonio and Team Phoenix

Winner: Team Phoenix


Get away from them, Becky. They don't deserve you.

The point of this game is… well, I’m not really sure. I guess to make shots. This event is great because the NBA has tried 400 different versions to try to make it work, and this is still the event that people choose to use the restroom or buy nachos.

Each team basically has to take turns making shots from around the floor. The team with the best time wins. If the team doesn’t make all their shots, they are awarded a score based on how many they did make. 

Same goes for the Finals, but this time (wait for it), theams have only one minute.

The NBA: Where Thrilling Happens.

As to the actual competition, are you kidding me? You think any team with Thunder Dan Majerle is losing anything to anyone? Dan Majerle will murder you. Actually take your life…in public. Couple him with sharp-shooting Barbosa and the WNBA could send out Carrot Top and Phoenix still wins this.

My heart still hopes for San Antonio and my one and only WNBA crush (Hammon). She’s full of sass and whatever by-product comes from sass.

Call me, Becky.

By the way, the Detroit team: worst team ever.  Bill Laimbeer? Aaron Affalo? Team Los Angeles isn’t much better either. This is clearly a two-horse race.


Foot Locker Three Point Competition


Mike Bibby: 6’2″ PG from the Atlanta Hawks
Daequan Cook: 6’5″ G from the Miami Heat
Danny Granger: 6’8″ SF from the Indiana Pacers
Jason Kapono: 6’8″ SF from the Toronto Raptors
Rashard Lewis: 6’10” SF from the Orlando Magic
Roger Mason Jr.:6’5″ SG from the San Antonio Spurs

Finals:Jason Kapono, Roger Mason, Mike Bibby

Winner:Jason Kapono


Doing the only thing he can really do...

I honestly think Kapono wins this because he has nothing else to do. He doesn’t really play anymore, all he has are his lonely jumpers in the gym after practice because no one likes him (unconfirmed). He becomes the de-facto Craig Hodges or Tim Legler of this competition, a 10th man or worse who only brings a long-range jumper to the table. People like Granger have to worry about actually scoring and leading a team. Bibby has to worry about running an offense. Kapono trolls the arena for after-game booty from the bench (also unconfirmed but logical when you think about it). 

Oh, and he also can become the third person to three-peat, joining Larry Bird and Hodges.


Sprite Slam Dunk Contest


Rudy Fernandez: 6’6″ SF from the Portland Trailblazers
Dwight Howard: 6’11” C from the Orlando Magic
Nate Robinson:5’9″ PG from the New York Knicks
J.R. Smith:6’6″ SG from the Denver Nuggets

Finals: Dwight Howard and Nate Robinson

Winner: Dwight Howard

Rudy, Rudy, Rudy...

Rudy, Rudy, Rudy...

Kudos to Howard, who is in this competition now for the third consecutive season. I think he just has to show up to win this contest. He has had his dunks played on television and online so many times, that people will assume he’s the best dunker (fans get to choose the winner in the finals) before it even starts.

Robinson will have to actually get a dunk down this time (you can do it, little guy!) to have a shot, and he gets the nod because, seriously… it’s a 5’9″ guy throwing it down. What does Rudy Fernandez have that can top that?

That being said, I can see Fernandez as the dark-horse. Spanish guys are crazy. I learned that in an unfortunate holiday in Madrid one summer. I won’t go into details, but needless to say, I won’t be going back.


Hopefully, you’re knee deep in readiness for tonight. Remember, just because barely any real stars are competing tonight, doesn’t make the events any less fun or any more contrived than they were before (J.R. Smith? Yes, please!). Enjoy tonight with your special someone, curled up and watching Dwight Howard don his cape one more time.

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