I was pretty close about the result of the Rookie-Sophomore Challenge, but the thing that astounded me the most was the amount of dunks there were. I really truly expected some defense to be played, and alley-oops were being thrown all over the court. Maybe everyone was really excited about the Dunk Contest.
Haier Shooting Stars, 8:30, TNT
Thoughts: Sorry, no predictions for this one. This event I’ve always thought should be on Friday. This event is basically a placeholder to start off the night, and just give a taste of what the Saturday night will bring. The winners here don’t really matter much.
Taco Bell Skills Challenge, shortly after Haier Shooting Stars, TNT
Players: Stephen Curry, Derrick Rose, John Wall, Russell Westbrook, and Chris Paul
Predictions: Rose will show why he is likely the best point guard in the NBA, and possibly the MVP this year. Don’t count out rookie John Wall, though. I think he’ll get over some nerves and play well.
Foot Locker 3-point Contest
Players: Ray Allen, Kevin Durant, Dorell Wright, James Jones, Paul Pierce, Daniel Gibson
Predictions: Pierce will have a tough time defending his title against teammate Allen and Daniel Gibson. He’ll come close, but no cigar, with Allen coming up big to win.
Sprite Slam Dunk Contest
Players: DeMar DeRozan, Serge Ibaka, JaVale McGee, and Blake Griffin
Predictions: I always love the Dunk Contest, but someone is going to have to come up big to save the competition from possibly being scratched from All-Star Weekend. Blake Griffin should take home that honor but don’t be so surprised if Serge Ibaka does well. DeMar DeRozan should be his usual electric self as well.