Last weekend the NBA’s best showcased their talents during the NBA’s annual All-Star weekend. This year, the All-Star game and events were held in Charlotte, North Carolina, home of the Charlotte Hornets.
Last Friday kicked off the weekend with the Celebrity game featuring various celebs, former NBA players, and current WNBA players. WNBA legends Sue Bird and Dawn Staley we’re head coaches for the teams.
Following the celebrity game, the Rising Stars Challenge game showcased the best rookies and sophomore NBA players currently in the NBA.
Team World was led by last year’s rookie of the year winner, Philadelphia Sixers guard Ben Simmons. Simmons was also the first Australian ever to compete in the event, he finished with 28 points. Team USA was led by Los Angeles Lakers sensation and Rising Stars game MVP Kyle Kuzma. Kuzma would go on to score 35 points and lead Team USA to a 161-144 victory over Team World.
All-Star Saturday Night is always one of the highlights of All-Star weekend that includes the Skills Challenge, 3-Point contest, and the Slam Dunk contest.
Boston Celtics guard Jayson Tatum won in a close showdown against Atlanta Hawks guard Trae Young to win the Skills challenge title. Joe Harris won the 3-Point Contest, loving up to his ranking of the 2nd ranked 3-Pointer shooter in the NBA. OKC Thunder guard Hamidou Diallo electrified the crowd winning the dunk contest, including one dunk over NBA legend Shaquille O’Neal.
The actual NBA All-Star game brought all the entertainment it typically brings every year. This year’s captains were Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James, and Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokoumpo.
After entertaining the fans with alley-oops, flashy dunks, and fancy ball handling, the halftime score was 95-92. After some defense, and knowing $350,000 goes to the winning team’s charity, players turned the game a bit competitive.
Team LeBron would go on to win the game 178-164. Golden State forward and Team LeBron member, Kevin Durant, was voted by the fans as the All-Star MVP. It would be Durant’s 2nd All-Star MVP. Team LeBron won $350,000 for Right Moves for Youth of Charlotte, but Team Giannis would not go away empty-handed. Second Harvest Food Bank of Metrolina, represented by Team Giannis would receive $150,000.
Both charities, in the NBA All-Star tradition, directly help the community of the host city which was Charlotte this year. The 2020 NBA All-Star game and weaekend next season will be in Chicago, Illinois.