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A competition filled weekend for the NBA

Damian Lillard of the Milwaukee Bucks, was named MVP of the NBA All-Star Weekend after scoring 39 points.

The 73rd NBA All-Star Weekend, held Feb. 16-18 in Indianapolis, Indiana, showcased 24 of the league’s star players competing in skill challenges, games and contests. The weekend resulted in multiple record-breaking events.

On Feb. 17 the Skills Challenge, Starry 3-Point Contest, Stephen vs. Sabrina 3-Point Challenge and the Slam Dunk Contest took place.

In this year’s Skills Challenge the home team, team Pacers, won. Three All-Stars vs. three players from the Pacers who are the host of the event compete in passing, ball handling, jump shooting and speed challenges. This was the third straight year the home team has taken home the victory.

The Starry 3-Point Contest followed the Skills Challenge, and our very own Damian Lillard defended his title. This being his second year in a row winning and the first repeated winner since 2007 and 2008. The 2024 3-point Contest consisted of four racks located in four different locations with five balls on them. The racks had four NBA game balls that were worth one point each, and the fifth ball was multicolored worth two points.

The final round of the 3-point contest Lillard nailed four buckets in a row on his second to last rack and jogged over to the final rack where he only needed one more point to win.

New to this year’s NBA All-Star Weekend was the Stephen vs. Sabrina 3-Point Challenge. Last year Sabrina Ionescu in the WNBA’s 3-pointer shootout scored 37 points which broke Stephen Curry’s NBA record of 31 points. The Golden State Warriors guard Curry and New York Liberty guard Ionescu came to face each other, finishing with a score of 29–26 for Curry.

“For us to deliver a show like that, it was perfect,” Curry said to ABC 7. “As much excitement as you can build in that short amount of time with two great shooters going at it. This is something we’ll remember for a long time.”

Ending the day off with the Slam Dunk Contest, Mac McClung for the G League, Osceola Magic, became the defending champ, winning his second year in a row. For his last attempt he did a reverse dunk while jumping over Shaquille O’Neal who wore McClung’s Gate City High School jersey, and received a perfect score of 50.

The All-Star game held on Feb. 18 ended with a final score of 211–186, with the Eastern Conference All-Stars coming up on top. Not only did the East win but their total is the most points scored by a team in an All-Star Game, and the East made 42 3-pointers in the game which passed the record set in 2019 by Team LeBron.

The Western Conference All-Stars and the Easter Conference All-Stars totaled a combined score of 397 which set a new mark as well.

Damien Lillard, playing for the East, scored 39 points with 11 3-pointers, and was named MVP. Karl-Anthony Towns, playing for the West, had a game-high of 50 points on 23-for-35 shooting. He, along with Jayson Tatum, Stephen Curry and Anthony Davis, are the only players to ever score 50 points in an All-Star Game. Towns also had 40 points after halftime which broke the record for the most points scored in a half.

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Jacoba Jones, Sports reporter

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