1. The Game
Vegas is supposed to be a city that never sleeps, but a last nights All-Star game changed that. The game was never even close as the West destroyed the East by 21, 153-132. The West was up 20 at halftime and would eventually stretch it out to 30 thanks to a trio of players with at least 20 points. Kobe Bryant picked up the MVP trophy with 31 points while Amare Stoudemire had 29 and Carmelo Anthony put in 20. Every player on both rosters scored in the contest, but it was a struggle for Caron Butler to get a bucket in his first All-Star appearance. Butler connected on his only hoop (1-7 FG) with just 4:07 left in the game, while his Wizards teammate never heated up in the game either. Gilbert Arenas was just 3-8 in the game for eight points.
2. Dunk Contest
Gerald Green won the slam dunk contest as he did his best Dee Brown imitation while leaping over tiny Nate Robinson. He then went on to jump over a table. It was a decent performance but nobody is going to be ranking it up there with Vince, Nique and Mike. Dwight Howard got screwed because hes tall as he slapped a sticker onto the backboard just a mere 12 ½ feet off the ground. But it was lost on the judges who seemed to kinda stingy with their scores. The commentators even began referring to Michael Jordan as the Russian judge. The Mount Rushmore of dunkers probably wasnt impressed with very many of the slams because its hard to give someone a 10, knowing that you could have thrown it down better.
3. 3-Point Shootout
Jason Kapono easily won the 3-point contest over big names like Gilbert Arenas, Dirk Nowitzki and Jason Terry as he put up 24 points in his final run. That ties the record for most points in a final round and was just one point away from tying the most points ever. But it really shouldnt have been a surprise as Kapono is leading the league in 3-point shooting by nailing 56 percent of his attempts. He has hit 89 of 159 from downtown this season, which is the best first half shooting performance in the history of the league by anyone who has shot at least 75 treys. In all, it was a good weekend for the Heat as Dwyane Wade defended his crown in the skills competition. Now, lets see if All-Star successes can jumpstart the Heat down the stretch.
Sundays Player of the Day: Kobe Bryant vs. The East 28 min, 31 pts (FG: 13-24, 3FG: 3-9, FT: 2-2), 5 reb, 6 ast, 6 stl
Buzzer Beater: Every year he gets a little bit older and a bit more out of shape, but every year Shaq proves that this is still his league. Even if you dont like Shaq, hes an entertaining guy and he understands that the All-Star game is about having fun and putting on a show for the fans. From break dancing during practice, to unveiling his latest concept shoe that doubles as a slot machine, to kissing Tracy McGrady on the head after a slam; he makes it fun. And hes always going to bring the ball up the court on at least on possession and try to cross somebody over; last night it was Mehmet Okur, and even though he missed the shot, thats a play that the fans are going to remember. But now that the game is over, Shaqs going to return to his serious self as the Heat make a push toward the postseason.