NBA All-Star weekend: West tops East

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Jack Sweeney, Staff Writer

 

Three-Point Contest

The league’s best shooters all came to play Saturday night in the Foot Locker three-point contest. This star-studded lineup included; Marco Belinelli (Spurs), Steph Curry (Warriors), James Harden (Rockets), Kyrie Irving (Caveliers), Kyle Korver (Hawks), Wesley Mathews (Blazers), J.J. Redick (Clippers) and Klay Thompson (Warriors).

The contest lasts only two rounds, and each contestant gets to shoot 30 three-point shots. Each shot is worth one point, except for the Money Ball which is worth two points.  There is a maximum of 34 points that can be scored. After the first round, the top three contestants advance to the championship round.

One of the biggest surprises of the night was Kyle Korver’s pedestrian 18 of a possible 34 points in the first round. Korver led the league going into the weekend shooting 52% from behind the arc.

Steph Curry scored 23 out of a possible 34 points and was matched by Kyrie Irving; both advanced to the championship round. Klay Thompson outshined his teammate Steph Curry and scored 24 points.

Irving shot first in the championship round and could not seem to find a groove, only posting 17 points. Next up was Steph Curry who did not take long to catch fire. Curry scored a Three-Point Contest record and scored 27 points.

At one point the Golden State Warriors point guard hit 13 shots in a row, and hit 25 out of 30 shots. Klay Thompson tried his best to outdo his teammate once again, but only managed to score 14 points.

Steph Curry was crowned Three-Point Contest Champion, and is already a heavy favorite for next year’s contest.

 

Slam Dunk Contest

Four of the NBA’s best dunkers took part in the Sprite Slam Dunk Contest Saturday night. The participants included Zach Lavine (Timberwolves), Victor Oladipo (Magic), Mason Plumlee (Nets) and Giannis Antetokounmpo.

Oladipo started the evening off with a perfect score of 50, with an incredible 360-degree spin move and over the head slam. Lavine followed that with a perfect score of his own, complete with a Space Jam-themed, under the leg slam dunk. The two set themselves apart from the competition early and advanced to the championship round.

Oladipo could not match the special dunks Lavine had. The Minnesota Timberwolves shooting guard sealed his victory with a ferocious slam that came off of the side of the basket and then went under his leg before being thrown down into the hoop. Lavine (19 years old) is the second youngest player to win this contest, the first being Kobe Bryant (18 years old).

 

All-Star Game

The main event of this All-Star weekend took place Sunday night. The leagues’ best players from the Eastern and Western conferences went head to head. Some of these players include Lebron James, Kevin Durant, Steph Curry and John Wall. For fans of high-scoring games, you could not have asked for more from this All-Star game.

With 321 total points scored, this was the highest scoring All-Star game ever. It was a close game the entire night, but Russell Westbrook gave the West the boost they needed to win the game 163-158 over the East. Westbrook scored 41 points (second highest ever in All-Star game history) and was named MVP of the game.