2017 NBA All-Star Game
The 2017 NBA All-Star Game in New Orleans concluded on Sunday night with the Western Conference defeating the Eastern Conference 192–182. As per the usual for the All-Star Game, defense was almost nonexistent and dunks were raining down left and right.
Anthony Davis, from the hometown New Orleans Pelicans, broke Wilt Chamberlain’s record of 42 points in an All-Star Game. Wilt’s record had stood for 54 years.
Davis scored 52 points while grabbing 10 rebounds en route to snagging MVP honors. NBA History documented Davis’ 52 point performance on Twitter:
Russell Westbrook was on track to break Wilt Chamberlain’s single-game All-Star scoring record, but ended up falling one point shy. Westbrook finished with 41 points, 7 assists, and 5 rebounds.
After the disappointing dunk contest on Saturday, Eastern Conference All-Star Giannis Antetokounmpo decided to bring the dunk contest to Sunday. The Milwaukee Bucks star seemed to shake off any nervous jitters he may have had before he even stepped onto the court for his debut All-Star appearance. Antetokounmpo etched an Eastern Conference team high of 30 points on 14–17 from the field. Despite Antetokounmpo’s performance, East coach Brad Stevens chose not to play the Buck’s star in the fourth quarter. The Milwaukee Bucks took to Twitter to share The Greek Freak’s best plays, including a play where Stephen Curry elected to lay on the ground to avoid being posterized by Giannis — Curry ends up being posterized by Giannis just minutes after his interesting defensive strategy:
Another great view of Giannis putting Stephen Curry on a poster, featuring a lovely reaction from DeAndre Jordan:
All eyes were on the former dynamic duo of Russell Westbrook and Kevin Durant. The two All-Stars stepped on the court as teammates for the first time since Durant announced his signing with the Golden State Warriors. Many fans believe that Westbrook was snubbed by not being chosen as a starter, seeing as he is averaging a triple-double on the season with 31.1 points, 10.5 rebounds, and 10.1 assists per game. Western Conference head coach Steve Kerr waited no time before subbing Westbrook into the game just minutes into the first quarter. Shortly after being subbed into the game, Westbrook connected with Durant for an alley-oop that reminded all of us of the good ole days back when they were both with the Oklahoma City Thunder.
The very familiar and reminiscent alley-oop led to the Western Conference to react how most of us were feeling on the inside:
Fans were also blessed with some players being wired for this game, allowing us to experience Stephen Curry’s reaction to the Durant-Westbrook alley-oop:
Later, Steve Kerr offered his thoughts on the Westbrook-Durant connection: “That’s the beauty of the game,” he said, per the Bay Area News Group’s Anthony Slater. “You just let the game break the ice.”
Kevin Durant finished the game with 21 points, 10 rebounds, and 10 assists. Durant’s triple-double performance allowed him to join the elite company of Michael Jordan (1997), Lebron James (2011), and Dwyane Wade (2012), being the fourth player ever to record a triple-double in All-Star Game history.
Back on the Eastern Conference side, Lebron James scored 23 points — including a three pointer that was from nearly half court:
James also became the first player in NBA All-Star history to break the 300 point barrier.
The weekend may be over, but we can still reminisce for a little bit longer with the NBA’s best reactions and mic’d up moments from the All-Star Game:
Out of all the funny and crazy moments to happen this weekend, my favorite moment happened with less than a second left in the first half. After the East made the eventual last basket of the half, East All-Star Kyrie Irving inbounded the ball to West All-Star Stephen Curry:
The All-Star Game always provides a lot of entertainment, not only for the fans but also for the players. Now that All-Star Weekend has passed, our favorite All-Star players must focus back in on the regular season. The All-Star break extends into this week, meaning that play will not resume until Thursday, Feb. 23, with the Cleveland Cavaliers and New York Knicks to tipoff at 8 p.m. ET on TNT.
The All-Star Game heads back to California as Los Angeles gears up to host the 2018 NBA All-Star Game.