By Will Stevenson
Welcome to NBA All-Star Weekend 2017! This has been garbage-truck juice. Has there been anything that has lived up to the hype as of now? The skills challenge had the most intrigue of the weekend as Kristaps Porzingis took home the trophy for the Bigs. The Rising Star Challenge, which featured rookie and 2nd year players on 2 teams (Team USA and Team World), was lackluster as usual. It always ends up turning into a “who can shoot the most threes” game, which as a viewer, is a boring game. It is an exhibition game, and we would all crush teams and players if anyone was to get injured because they decided to “play hard”. Does anyone do crossovers anymore? There use to be a time when guys would go one on one and attempt to embarrass their competitor, but I suppose those days are over.
The Three-Point contest is what it is. There are eight guys shooting thirty shots in under a minute, and it doesn’t get more exciting than that. The TPC doesn’t need tweaking as much as it needs guys to hit the shots. I would prefer guys to be able to be mobile when shooting, but that’s just me.
The Dunk Contest comes and goes, and this year it was a stinker. They’ve played with the format so much that there’s no room for error. Each contestant gets two dunks, but not consecutively. That means you do your first dunk, and then you wait for your next turn which seems virtually impossible to gain any type of rhythm if anything were to go wrong. We have seen enough YouTube videos and dunk videos to know that the best dunkers in the world aren’t in the NBA, but the NBA isn’t the type to outsource their entertainment (pay people to join the festivities).
We all know the main issue with the All-Star Weekend: There isn’t enough money changing hands for the events. Actual prize money being awarded to winners is better than charity money. If I’m in the Dunk Contest, 500 thousand made out to me sounds better than any trophy. Let’s be honest, betting makes things more exciting.
Is there anything interesting about today’s All-Star Game, other than KD and Westbrook? no. All we can hope for is some type of petty behavior that we want to see, but will also condemn afterwards. Funny how that works.