NBA All Star Weekend

The NBA descends on Los Angeles for the All-Star Weekend.

It all begins on Friday evening and culminates on Sunday with the 67th NBA All-Star Game


The Rising Stars Challenge on Friday night features 2 rosters of players representing the United States and the World:

U.S. Team

  • Jaylen Brown
  • John Collins
  • Kris Dunn
  • Brandon Ingram
  • Kyle Kuzma
  • Donovan Mitchell
  • Dennis Smith Jr
  • Jayson Tatum
  • Taurean Prince
  • De’Aron Fox

World Team

  • Bogdan Bogdanovic
  • Dillon Brooks
  • Joel Embiid
  • Buddy Hield
  • Lauri Markkanen
  • Jamal Murray
  • Frank Ntilikina
  • Domantas Sabonis
  • Dario Saric
  • Ben Simmons

The players to watch in this one for me are the exciting rookies from the Jazz and Mav’s, Mitchell and Smith Jr. They will be given us a prelude of what they will show off in the dunk contest. The opposition is made up of three players from the Sixers (Embiid, Saric and Simmons) and I am sure they will come up with some fun stuff on the court.


All-Star Saturday Night consists of three events that starts with the Skills Challenge featuring the following:

  • Spencer Dinwiddie
  • Joel Embiid
  • Al Horford
  • Lauri Markkanen
  • Buddy Hield
  • Jamal Murray
  • Andre Drummond
  • Lou Williams

The field is missing Kristaps Porzingis sadly due to injury but I am looking forward to seeing Joel Embiid in this one and I think he will be challenged by Lou Williams.

Next up after the Skills Challenge is the Three-Point Contest. The field is a strong one and has the following 8 players:

  • Eric Gordon
  • Klay Thompson
  • Bradley Beal
  • Paul George
  • Kyle Lowry
  • Devin Booker
  • Wayne Ellington
  • Tobias Harris

With a field that includes the last 2 winners of this event in Eric Gordon and Klay Thompson, it’s going to be interesting to see if anyone else can take the win. My money is on Gordon to win and go back to back.

Finally we have the Slam Dunk Contest. This competition has seen some of the greatest dunks you will ever see on a court. We have seen Michael Jordan, Dominique Wilkins, Spud Webb, JR Rider, Vince Carter and more recently Zach LaVine star in this event. The field this year comprises of:

  • Donovan Mitchell
  • Dennis Smith Jr.
  • Larry Nance Jr.
  • Victor Oladipo

Donovan Mitchell joined this event after Aaron Gordon pulled out through injury. For me this event is all about Dennis Smith Jr. and he has already shown off some incredible dunking skills this season on Mav’s games. This could be the best contest we have seen in some time.


The main event after a weekend long celebration of NBA talent finally arrives with the 67th All Star Game featuring 2 teams. LeBron James and Steph Curry were voted in as Captain’s and picked their teams as follows:

Team LeBron

  • LeBron James
  • Anthony Davis
  • Kevin Durant
  • Kyrie Irving
  • LaMarcus Aldridge
  • Bradley Beal
  • Goran Dragic
  • Andre Drummond
  • Paul George
  • Victor Oladipo
  • Kemba Walker
  • Russell Westbrook

Team Steph

  • Steph Curry
  • Giannis Antetokounmpo
  • DeMar DeRozan
  • Joel Embiid
  • James Harden
  • Jimmy Butler
  • Draymond Green
  • Al Horford
  • Damian Lillard
  • Kyle Lowry
  • Klay Thompson
  • Karl-Anthony Towns

Team LeBron has had some changes since the All-Star teams were announced due to injuries to DeMarcus Cousins, Kevin Love, John Wall and Kristaps Porzingis. Both teams are brimming with talent and the game itself will be its usual high scoring affair. Westbrook and Durant on the same team should be fun, as will LeBron and Durant playing together. My pick for MVP is James Harden and I see Team Steph winning the game.

On a recent conference call, TNT Analysts Reggie Miller and Chris Webber reflected on their respective first All-Star Games:

Reggie Miller:

“I was literally knees shaking walking into my locker room when there’s Michael Jordan, Larry Bird, Charles Barkley, I was in awe. Then across the way, there’s Magic [Johnson], James Worthy, etc. Kevin Johnson and myself, I believe were the only first-timers in that 1990 game. I have to believe I was star struck, I was a kid in a candy store. I’ll always remember being so nervous on the bus ride over, keeping my head down. I couldn’t believe being the presence of all these Hall of Famers.”

Chris Webber:

“My first one was very special… What was really special is it was the [NBA’s 50th Anniversary All-Time Team]. George Gervin patted me on the back and said, ‘I knew I’d see you here one day.’ I was in a room of all legends, the greatest to ever play the game. It was something that I’ll never forget. It was great playing in the game, but I remember more about the weekend than I do playing in that game.”

It’s going to be a fun weekend of action and don’t miss out on a second of it.

NBA All-Star 2018 from Los Angeles will be broadcast on BT Sport 1. Coverage includes:
– Friday evening/Saturday morning, 2am: Mtn Dew Kickstart Rising Stars Challenge
– Saturday evening/Sunday morning, 1am: State Farm All-Star Saturday Night
– Sunday evening/Monday morning, 1am: The 67th NBA All-Star Game at Staples Center in Los Angeles