NBA All-Star Weekend Preview

It’s NBA All-Star Weekend in New Orleans! What could possibly go wrong?

Friday, Feb. 17

NBA All-Star Celebrity Game

Team Smith vs Team Hill

Michael Smith’s West Team:

Miles Brown (actor)    

Tom Cavanagh (actor)    

Mark Cuban (Dallas Mavericks owner)    

Baron Davis (NBA legend)    

Andy Grammer (recording artist)    

Jiang Jinfu (actor, model)    

Anthony Mackie (actor)    

Romeo Miller (actor, recording artist)    

Hasan Minhaj (actor, comedian)    

Master P (actor, recording artist)    

Candace Parker (Los Angeles Sparks)    

Aarón Sánchez (celebrity chef)    

Coaches:

Michael Smith (ESPN host)

Draymond Green (Golden State Warriors)

Rocsi Diaz (television personality)

Jemele Hill’s East Team

Brandon Armstrong (former NBA D-League player and social media star)

Win Butler (musician)

Nick Cannon (actor, recording artist)

Rachel DeMita (NBA2K TV personality)

Ansel Elgort (actor, recording artist)

Marc Lasry (Milwaukee Bucks owner)

Caleb McLaughlin (actor)

Peter Rosenberg (media personality)

Oscar Schmidt (Basketball legend)

Lindsay Whalen (WNBA player)

Jason Williams (NBA legend)

Kris Wu (recording artist)

Coaches:

Jemele Hill (ESPN host)

Kyle Lowry (Toronto Raptors)

Fat Joe (recording artist)

 

Winner and MVP:

NB: I have Michael Smith’s team taking this one, with B Diddy (Baron Davis) starting his NBA comeback by taking MVP. He could improve the Wizards’ bench right now, right?

JC: Hold up, Kevin Hart isn’t playing!? The Trump Presidency really is the worst. I’m going Jemele Hill’s team and Jason Williams aka White Chocolate for MVP.

RH: I’ll take Michael Smith’s team. Romeo Miller is a stud in these games.

 

Rising Stars Challenge

USA vs the World

U.S. Team Roster

Devin Booker (Suns)

Malcolm Brogdon (Bucks)

Marquese Chriss (Suns)

Brandon Ingram (Lakers)

Frank Kaminsky (Hornets)

Jahlil Okafor (76ers)

D’Angelo Russell (Lakers)

Jonathon Simmons (Spurs)

Karl-Anthony Towns (Timberwolves)

Myles Turner (Pacers)

World Team Roster

Alex Abrines* (Thunder)

Danté Exum (Jazz)

Buddy Hield (Pelicans)

Nikola Jokic (Nuggets)

Trey Lyles (Jazz)

Willy Hernangomez** (Knicks)

Jamal Murray (Nuggets)

Kristaps Porzingis (Knicks)

Domantas Sabonis (Thunder)

Dario Saric (76ers)

* injury replacement for Joel Embiid

** injury replacement for Emmanuel Mudiay

 

Winner and MVP:

NB: This game will really miss Embiid, but I think the World takes this one. Between Jokic and KP, the World has more talent. I wouldn’t count out Booker just shooting lights out though. At the end of the day, Kristaps will take MVP.

JC: With how #woke the NBA is, I feel like they should have scrapped the “US v. the World” aspect this year. Anyway, I’m going World and our guy Porzingis gets MVP after swatting KAT’s ish out of the arena.

RH: So everyone’s on the world huh? I’ll take the good ole US of A led by the next NBA superstar Karl-Anthony Towns.

 

Saturday, Feb. 18

Taco Bell Skills Challenge

Devin Booker (Suns)

DeMarcus Cousins (Kings)

Anthony Davis (Pelicans)

Gordon Hayward (Jazz)

Nikola Jokic* (Nuggets)

Kristaps Porzingis (Knicks)

Isaiah Thomas (Celtics)

John Wall (Wizards)

* injury replacement for Joel Embiid

 

Winner:

NB: John Wall. Because who has more skills than John Wall?

JC: Taco Bell, for being associated with athletes/drunk eating everywhere. Also Isaiah Thomas for being every 5’ 9” guy’s hero.

RH: Anthony Davis. KAT won this competition last year and the big man dominance continues this year.

 

JBL Three-Point Contest

Eric Gordon (Rockets)

Kyrie Irving (Cavaliers)

Kyle Lowry (Raptors)

Wes Matthews (Mavericks)

CJ McCollum (Blazers)

Klay Thompson (Warriors)

Kemba Walker (Hornets)

Nick Young (Lakers)

 

Winner:

NB: Klay Thompson. Just because it’s obvious, doesn’t mean it won’t happen.

JC: Klay Thompson is so pumped that Steph Curry isn’t participating this year and I’m not sure why anyone else even bothers to show up.

RH: Klay Thompson. I usually like to be contrarian, but you can’t go against Klay in anything that involves shooting a basketball.

Verizon Slam Dunk Contest

Aaron Gordon (Magic)

DeAndre Jordan (Clippers)

Glenn Robinson III (Pacers)

Derrick Jones Jr. (Suns)

 

Winner:

NB: Derrick Jones Jr. The world is about to meet Mr. Jones.

JC: Aaron Gordon because he literally carries the weight of Magic fans’ happiness on his shoulders. They have nothing else to root for and he will not let them down.

RH: Aaron Gordon. After the Serge Ibaka trade debacle, this is a nice consolation prize for the Magic that will help their fans forget for at least one night that their team has no clue what it’s doing.

 

Sunday, Feb. 19

66th NBA All-Star Game

Eastern Conference

Starters:

Kyrie Irving PG / Cleveland Cavaliers

DeMar DeRozan SG / Toronto Raptors

LeBron James SF / Cleveland Cavaliers

Giannis Antetokounmpo SF / Milwaukee Bucks

Jimmy Butler SF / Chicago Bulls

Reserves:

Isaiah Thomas PG / Boston Celtics

John Wall PG / Washington Wizards

Carmelo Anthony* SF / New York Knicks

Kyle Lowry PG / Toronto Raptors

Paul George SF / Indiana Pacers

Kemba Walker PG / Charlotte Hornets

Paul Millsap PF / Atlanta Hawks

Western Conference

Starters:

Stephen Curry PG / Golden St. Warriors

James Harden SG / Houston Rockets

Kevin Durant SF / Golden St. Warriors

Kawhi Leonard SF / San Antonio Spurs

Anthony Davis PF / New Orleans Pelicans

Reserves:

Russell Westbrook PG / Oklahoma City Thunder

Klay Thompson SG / Golden St. Warriors

Draymond Green PF / Golden St. Warriors

DeMarcus Cousins PF / Sacramento Kings

Marc Gasol C / Memphis Grizzlies

DeAndre Jordan C / L.A. Clippers Clippers

Gordon Hayward SF / Utah Jazz

* injury replacement for Kevin Love

 

Winner and MVP:

NB: These are really good rosters on both sides. The West is phenomenal, complemented by 4 guys who play on the same team. I think their fire power takes the game for them. For MVP, this has to be Russell Westbrook, right? Not only does he always go all out in the ASG, he has extra motivation having to play with KD for a day. Watch out for that dynamic.

JC: The West, top to bottom, is a better team and better conference for that matter. They ought to win going away. MVP goes to the Brow after he puts up a triple double with points, rebounds, and blocks. Defense isn’t dead at the All-Star game!

RH: I’m back to being the contrarian! This is a guard driven league and I’ll take the depth of the East’s group of guards ever so slightly over the West’s guards. Your MVP, none other than LeBron James.

 

-Nick Bair, Jordan Curet, and Randy Haines

Photo Credit: Orlando Sentinal

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