I went to sleep yesterday after a very entertaining start to NBA All-Star Weekend 2013. Friday night featured the Celebrity All-Star Game and the BBVA Rising Stars Challenge with Team Shaq and Team Chuck battling it out in Houston.
I was rooting for Team Chuck. They broke the previous scoring record of 155 points with their 163-135 win over Team Shaq. It was a blow-out, but an exciting one on both ends of the floor, no doubt.
The move everyone is talking about is almost 21-year-old Kyrie Irving’s ankle-breaking crossover on Brandon Knight:
“OH NO, OH NO!” Oh yes, Mr. Webber! Irving promises a bright future for the Cleveland Cavaliers fans, and it’s always a joy to watch him play. Though his team lost, he was far from failing to put on a show.
Alexey Shved, the rookie from Russia showed off some unexpected dunks last night. He and teammate Ricky Rubio playing for Chuck convinced Chris Webber to turn to the Minnesota Timberwolves games more often in the remainder of the NBA season.
Kenneth Faried with 40 points and 10 rebounds was named MVP, and he was all smiles the entire evening. He seems like a positive guy and a motivating teammate. Fans can expect to see more of him tonight in the Sprite Slam Dunk Contest as the finale to All-Star Saturday.
In the final seconds of the Rising Stars Challenge, players dunked the ball on an open floor. All the other guys moved out of the way to see someone slam the ball down the basket as if they were watching a dunk contest. It was cute! Yes, cute–like aww these guys are having so much fun and just chilling, and aw THAT’S SO CUTE. I love seeing the less serious side of these players. There wasn’t a single serious game face in sight.
Tonight is usually my favorite out of the three-day event. Shooting Stars, Skills Challenge, and the Three-Point Shootout (Go Novak!) lead up to the Slam Dunk Contest, in which Knickerbocker James White is expected to take flight. Take a look at where his feet lift off the ground in this Knicks practice video:
I’m not sure who screamed “WHOA JIMMY!” in that, but I’m sure he won’t be the only one after tonight.