NBA All-Star Weekend Events Explained
NBA All-Star Weekend Events Explained
NBA All-Star Weekend is one of the most anticipated events in basketball. The yearly event brings together the biggest names in the sport to compete in an exhibition game and several smaller competitions over a three-day period. Fan votes decide who makes the All-Star team while head coaches select reserve players. All-Star Weekend dates back to March 2, 1951, when the first game was played at the Boston Garden.
With the NBA’s All-Star Weekend quickly approaching, fans across Canada and the world are getting ready to see their favorite players compete. Fans have always enjoyed betting on the All-Star game and checking out the latest NBA betting odds throughout the season, with some of the most dedicated basketball fans even betting on the three-point contest that takes place during the star-studded weekend. Before All-Star Weekend kicks off in Cleveland, it’s a good time to take a look at some of the weekend’s most exciting events.
NBA All-Star Celebrity Game
The NBA’s most exciting weekend kicks off with the NBA All-Star Celebrity Game on February 18th. WNBA players, retired NBA players, musicians, actors, and athletes from other sports come together for a fun, entertaining competition. Although a few professional basketball players are included in the mix, don’t expect professional-level play during this game. It’s all about having a good time, and nobody takes themselves too seriously during the event.
Highlights from past celebrity game showdowns include Scottie Pippen blocking Justin Bieber, and Paris Hilton attempting to coach a team. If you want the rare chance to see celebrities looking more human, this is the game to watch. Everything is out of control, the basketball is a mess, and the stars behave obnoxiously. This game never lets fans down and is the best way to start the All-Star Weekend off right.
Rising Stars Challenge
As the name suggests, this game is an opportunity for the league’s rookie and second-year players that have star potential to come together and show off their stuff. Unlike the weekend’s Celebrity Game, the Rising Stars game is a serious athletic competition where young players showcase their talents to the world.
What makes a player a rising star? They’ve impressed coaches, the media, and their peers and have the potential to become a lasting presence in the NBA. Some of the league’s top players past and present made their debut in the Rising Stars Challenge, including Kobe Bryant, Lebron James, Kevin Durant, Penny Hardaway, Allen Iverson, and Chris Webber.
The gameplay discourages defense, so you’ll get to enjoy players making spin moves, flashy passes, and crossovers, which are things you don’t get to see in a regular NBA match.
The NBA’s best long-distance shooters compete for the title of best three-point shooter during this fast-paced All-Star Weekend event. Players have one minute to make as many shots as possible from five positions behind the three-point line. Each position has a rack with five balls. Four balls are worth one point, and one ball (aka the money ball) on the rack is worth two points. The goal is to score as many points as possible in less than a minute, with 34 points being the maximum score possible. Phoenix Suns shooting guard Devin Booker holds the record for the most shots made in a single round, scoring 28 points in 2018.
Slam Dunk Contest
One of the most anticipated events during All-Star Weekend, the Slam Dunk Contest gives players an opportunity to show off their high-flying acrobatics while dunking the ball. The American Basketball Association held the first Slam Dunk Contest in 1976, making it one of the All-Star Weekend’s oldest events. A panel of judges scores participants’ dunks, with the two highest-scoring players advancing to the final round. Former Chicago Bull and NBA all-star Michael Jordan is the most famous Slam Dunk Contest winner.