by MATT GORDON Editor-in-chief
The National Basketball Association holds its All-Star weekend every year, which consists of the three point contest, skills competition, and dunk contest, but they should get rid of it all together.
Before I berate the other competitions, I must first acknowledge that the three point contest does contain some sort of entertaining competitive edge to it. Unlike the other contests, the top three point shooters in the league do participate and make the competition somewhat interesting.
This past contest, sharp shooters Steve Novak of the New York Knicks and Matt Bonner of the San Antonio Spurs lit up the court, but young Kyrie Irving of the Cleveland Cavaliers took the crown. This contest is the only one of the contests that clearly demonstrates the skill of NBA shooters and showcases the sport in good light.
As good as the three point contest is, that is how bad the skills competition is. During this year’s skills competition, many stars took to the court to complete an obstacle course that is meant to test the skills of point guards and prolific passers around the league. However, this year’s contest was flat and the players did not show much enthusiasm when completing the course.
Each contestant lollygagged around the posts they were meant to dribble around and gave a less than impressive performance from the free throw line. It was obvious that no effort was put in by any of the contestants before the competition.
Worst of all, the dunk contest, which is widely hyped by the media every year, was a huge disappointment. No-name players who sit on the ends of their respective benches were picked to come up with the craziest dunks they possibly could; and when they failed multiple times to complete these dunks, they were applauded for their effort and still awarded the highest possible scores.
Even after failing to complete the same dunk five or six times, when the contestants finally made the dunk, they were awarded perfect scores and their multiple misses were not taken into consideration. It is almost as if a big league baseball player struck out six times in a row before hitting a ground ball, but in the competition, that is applauded.
The no-name contestants in the dunk contest make it even worse. James White, a contestant in this year’s competition, got a score higher than the amount of minutes he has played all season for the New York Knicks. It is obvious that the contest does not pick the best players in the league.
Junior Connor Lavan said, “They should get rid of [the contest] unless they are going to have All-Stars compete like Lebron James and Russel Westrook.”
For now, the All-Star weekend lives on and takes up the Saturday night before the real All-Star game. Hopefully, someone in the NBA will realize that it is a waste of time and does not showcase the skills of the league, which is what should be the prime focus of the event.