After a few days of rest and recuperation after a long stretch in the 2021-22 season, the NBA is getting back to business with All-Star Weekend. The action kicked off on Friday with the Rising Stars game, though things really pick up on All-Star Saturday Night. Always one of the most exciting nights on the league schedule, the precursor to the All-Star Game will once again feature a trio of star-studded events: the Skills Challenge, 3-Point Contest and Dunk Contest.
Here’s everything you need to know about the big night:
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The Skills Challenge, which began in 2003, is the opening act of the evening. Although the exact format has changed a bit over the years, the general idea has remained the same. Players will fight their way through an obstacle course that tests their abilities in all facets of the game: dribbling, passing and shooting. This year, the event will feature three teams competing for the Skills Challenge crown.
3 point contest
After the skills challenge, we will move on to the 3-point contest. The format has changed in recent years with the addition of the MTN DEW zone, which are two extra hits well beyond the 3-point line that count as three points each.
Otherwise, it’s always the same format: five racks arranged around the pitch with five balls each, one of which features “money balls” worth two points. You have 60 seconds to shoot, and the three highest scores from round one advance to the championship round, where a winner is crowned.
Closing out the night is the main event, the Dunk Contest, which has produced some of the most iconic moments in NBA history. This one is as simple as it gets. You try to make the sickest dunk possible, and the five judges rate your effort on a scale of 1-10, resulting in a maximum of 50 points available. Each contestant gets two dunks in the first round, and the two highest combined scores move on to the championship round, where they get two more dunks to decide the winner.
This year’s contest features an interesting mix of young players, including second overall pick Jalen Green. All have thrown incredible dunks in the game – Toscano-Anderson, in particular, dunked JaVale McGee so much earlier this season that the Phoenix Suns center signed a slam poster for him – but this event will test their athleticism. and creativity in a different way.