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SBM Sports: Three Standouts From NBA All Star Weekend

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Kyrie MVP

The unofficial second half of the NBA season kicks off tonight after an entertaining All Star Game last Sunday. The events on Saturday don’t deserve a long winded recap, so I’ll sum it up this way: ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ

On to Sunday.

The All Star game is a big celebration for fans, a showcase for the game’s current and future stars, and a place for executives to discuss potential trade deadline deals. Fun all around. Some people took advantage of the spotlight, and made a mark on Sunday. Here’s what stood out to me:

Pharrell & Pharrell’s Hat –

Pharrell was a big part of my childhood. As a native of Virginia Beach (757!!), he, his N.E.R.D. collaborators, Timbaland, Missy, and the Clipse were my artists.

We don’t claim Magoo. Pharrell Red October

Like New Yorkers with every rapper ever, I felt like Pharrell and co. represented me to the rest of the world. So I was glad to see Pharrell take the stage for his mini-concert during player introductions. He took us all back to high school and undergrad with some hits that I forgot how much I enjoyed. Definitely one of the best event performances I’ve watched in a while.

And when that Grindin’ beat dropped?! I almost knocked my Miller Lite off the table trying to bang out the beat.

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As if that wasn’t enough, Pharrell debuted the Red October version of his silly Grammy hat. But the crazy thing? I was genuinely excited when he did it! I’ll be picking up a knockoff version of this on Canal Street next time I’m in New York City.

Did you know Pharrell won the Producer of the Year Grammy in 2004 and again in 2014? That’s longevity, man. Virginia Beach saved rap.

Kyrie Irving –

The All Star Game MVP stole the show in the fourth quarter when both teams actually started to play for real. While everyone waited for a LeBron James versus Kevin Durant face off, Irving collected 15 points and four assists to close the gap on the West team and seal the win.

Irving had been under criticism this season as writers began to wonder when his teams will start winning. It’s a fair point. In two and a half seasons, Irving has gone a combined 65-136 (20-33 this year) and missed 41 games. As good as Irving’s stats have been, it hasn’t translated to any tangible success for the team.

Sunday’s game helped dispel the idea that Irving is overrated. If anything, the recent firing of the Cleveland Cavaliers’ GM shows that there are bigger issues undermining the team’s success. That might mean that Irving will pull a LeBron and head to greener pastures when his contract is up if things don’t improve quickly.

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Of course, this is the guy who was supposed to help Irving this season, so he might have one foot out the door already.

Carmelo Anthony Defenders –

Anthony also had a great game on Sunday. He made eight 3-pointers and did his part to keep the team in the game as the West opened up an 18 point lead.

The online conversation around Anthony’s performance was more interesting than what he did on the court. There were lots of people comparing the game to a typical one for Anthony’s New York Knicks.

Anthony plays great. The rest of the team plays poorly. Anthony’s team is down and he has to play from behind. Rinse. Repeat.

I get it. And I agree that the Knicks roster sucks. But as great as he was (and as great at Anthony Defenders felt), he only confirmed what we already knew about him. It’s why he is so great on the USA Basketball teams. Carmelo is an elite scorer who can carry a team offensively. Even a team of the 12 best players in the league.

HOWEVER

Carmelo seems to work best as a Power Forward, which exposes him on defense and can subject his team to bad matchups. If he played on an All Star team every game, this wouldn’t be an issue. But he plays on the Knicks, and it will take a miracle for that team to become a contender while Carmelo is still near his prime. I don’t doubt that he can lead a team to a championship, but slow down, Defenders. Sunday’s All Star game was just more of the same from Melo.

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That’s what I took from Sunday’s game. What stood out to you? What are you most looking forward to in the second half of the NBA season?

Hit the comments and give me your thoughts!

Comment(20)

  1. All star game was cool..for the first time I was happy to see Melo score..#Bullsfanalldey..the rest was eh..the John Wall dunk was sub par..Steve Francis did that dunk in 2000 with no assistance so i wasn't impressed…

    1. Speaking of Melo and the Bulls…I heard a radio host float the idea of Melo joining Chicago this summer if/when he opts out. He already said he'd take less, and Chicago can clear a ton of space if/when they amnesty Carlos Boozer.

      A lineup of Rose, Butler, Melo, Gibson, and Noah sounds pretty good. I imagine you would welcome that with open arms. Would you?

        1. DAMN! Lol, didn't know it was like that in Chicago. I mean, having Carmelo to do the heavy lifting sometimes should keep Rose upright more often. Well I hope he does go to the Bulls, cause he's wasting away in NYC.

  2. I missed ASW and had to catch up on YT. It's crazy how the All Star has become like a tease for fans w/ fantasy lineups and summer FA season.

    I can't remember the last time I watched a Knicks game from start to finish. Far as I'm concerned, Syracuse is New York team's until April. As hardcore of a Knicks fan as I am, the Knicks don't deserve Melo. Even though he's willing to take a pay cut, Dolan has shown time and time again that he doesn't get the concept of spreading money around for the improvement of the team. But I'd be happy to see Melo as a Bull if means not seeing Boozer as a Bull. I like how Taj Gibson has been playing, which makes Boozer that much less likeable on court.
    My recent post Agent Diaries: When A Client Doesn’t Fit The Mold

        1. Tarheels handled them then Cameron's refs caused a meltdown. Like how can Duke fans pound their chest when at least 2 blown calls (that I saw) caused 1 of the most composed coaches in the NCAA to black out? Disgusting.

          My recent post Time Doesn’t Heal All Wounds

  3. Melo has had those type of games in the Olympics, maybe hes just better as a #2 guy. I like Kyrie, I just don't think he's a leader and this goes back to Duke. While the game wasn't good it was the first time I didn't feel like I was watching the same game from last year, I still think they need a fantasy draft
    My recent post Today’s Word is… TRADITIONAL

    1. Fantasy Drafts are always better. It's an exhibition anyway, so why not? It apparently worked for the Pro Bowl. I didn't watch it, but it seemed like more conversation and I heard the players went harder.

      Let the TNT guys do it and I'll watch that draft all day.

  4. Yeah got agree with you Joe on Pharrell. I felt like i was back in high school and college as well. He did rep the 757 and those 80's babies. lol
    Personally for me, it was good to see the future backcourt of the Wizards perform during the All Star weekend. The wizards have been so bad in the past few years and to now see we have a nice 1-2 punch is exciting. Walls and Beal are the future!

  5. The Slam Dunk Competition died when Blake Griffin jumped over the hood of that damn 4cylinder Kia …………sponsored by Kia.

    The new format just poked it with a stick… it remains life-less but somehow smells worse.

    suggestions
    1. Let children do the skills competition…coached by NBA players and use NBA players as obstacles.
    or
    2. kill the kills comp…and play 1 on 1…eff yeah!!!

    1. That'd be a fun idea, although I was listening to the BS Report podcast and they were saying the NBA rewards near-All-Stars with spots in the Skills Comp and Shooting Stars.

      Seems like a crappy reward, lol, but hey.

      I wasn't as down on the Dunk Contest as most. It was a flop, but I think if they let the "Battle Winners" go another round, and let the judges pick a winner, it would have been good. I guess they want the social media buzz of people picking the champion. I'd let fans have one collective vote along with the judges…that seems easy enough. Plus, MORE DUNKS.

      I think I fixed it.

      1. more dunks=yes
        social media scoring dunks+ hell no. this ain't American idol. The All Star selection is a popularity contest as it is.Past Slam Dunk champs only… and Dominique Williams & Dr. J….always!

    1. Listen man, I'm for a few things: making sure my wife and family are straight, and keeping the lights on. Nothing better than the triple hops brewed taste of Miller Lite. Did you know it's back in the Original White Can for a limited time?

      Also, don't forget to root for Brad Keselowski in the Blanco Deuce this weekend at the Daytona 500!

      #KeepTheLightsOn

  6. lolllll @ "We don’t claim Magoo"… comedy!!!
    Pharrell killed it really. But he always does :).

    Is Lala ok with the idea of moving to Chicago? She likes NYC uh…

    ps: i can't wait for the season to be over… it's not that fun this year! – A bitter Lakers fan 🙁

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