Image from nba-events.comThe NBA’s 2015 All-Star weekend is just around the corner and ABS-CBN Sports and ABS-CBN Sports + Action is proud to bring you closer to the spectacle as the network will air the BBVA Compass Rising Stars Challenge, State Farm All-Star Saturday Night, and the NBA All-Star Game live, respectively, from the Barclays Center and the Madison Square Garden from February 14 to February 16 on Channel 2 and ABS-CBN Sports + Action.
The BBVA Compass Rising Stars Challenge will tee off the bonanza on with their renewed format of USA vs. World in the annual showcase between 20 of the premier rookies and sophomores of the league. The participants were chosen by the league’s assistant coaches. The US team will be bannered by reigning KIA Rookie of the Year, Philadelphia 76ers guard Michael Carter-Williams and Team USA standout Miles Plumlee along with the solid guard combo of the Orlando Magic in Victor Oladipo and Elfrid Payton. The World team is headlined by the top overall pick of the 2014 Draft, Andrew Wiggins from the Minnesota Timberwolves along with the Milwaukee Bucks’ “Greek Freak” Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Chicago Bulls’ Nikola Mirotic. The US team will be coached by Golden State assistant Alvin Gentry and the World team will be handled by Kenny Atkinson of the Atlanta Hawks. The game will be aired live on ABS-CBN Channel 2 on Feb. 14, Saturday, with commentary provided by TJ Manotoc and Boom Gonzales who are in New York.
One of the most awaited activities during the All-Star Weekend is the showcase of the different skills in the State Farm All-Star Saturday Night. Saturday is when everybody goes out to have fun to watch the Degree Shooting Stars, Taco Bell Skills Challenge, Foot Locker Three-Point Contest and the much-awaited Sprite Slam Dunk contest.
The defending champions of the Degree Shooting Stars competition, Chris Bosh’s “Team Bosh” comprised of NBA legend Dominique Wilkins and Swin Cash look towards a repeat of their 2014 conquest.
They’ll be facing stiff competition with Stephen Curry, Anthony Davis, and Russell Westbrook throwing their hats in the ring with their own team made up of a current star, NBA legend, and a WNBA star.
Taco Bell Skills Challenge will be headlined by a new cast and format alongside 2014 champion, Trey Burke. The competition is now a head-to-head bracket-style tournament format. East All-Star starter John Wall makes his third appearance alongside fellow All-Stars Kyle Lowry while Chicago Bulls’ rising star Jimmy Butler and the Atlanta Hawks’ Jeff Teague. Michael Carter-Williams, Isaiah Thomas and Brandon Knight complete the cast for the event that is all about fundamentals.
Meanwhile in Foot Locker’s Three-Point Contest, Marco Bellineli needs to have his barrels smoking as his challengers aren’t slouches when it comes to bombing away from beyond the arc. The “Splash Brothers” of the Golden State Warriors, Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson, have accepted their invites. League-leader in 3-pt shooting Kyle Korver is also priming his pistols as well as Houston Rockets star James Harden, JJ Reddick, Wes Matthews and Kyrie Irving. Nets are going to burn as these stars fire away from 25-feet and out.
And who can’t wait for the Sprite Slam Dunk contest? With athletic freaks like Giannis Antetokounmpo, Zach LaVine to power-dunkers Victor Oladipo and Mason Plumlee, the penultimate even of All Star Saturday will surely leave the audience rocking and howling in delight as the four NBA stars punish the rim.
The State Farm All-Star Saturday Night will be aired live over ABS-CBN Sports + Action Channel 23 on Sunday, Feb. 15. TJ Manotoc and Boom Gonzales will deliver the commentary as it happens.
All of that climaxes on All Star Sunday in the 64th All Star Game between the Beasts of the East and the Best of the West in the mecca of basketball, the Madison Square Garden. The East is represented by LeBron James, Carmelo Anthony, Pau Gasol, and first-timers John Wall and Kyle Lowry while the wild, wild West will be bannered by first-time starter Stephen Curry, Anthony Davis, Marc Gasol and the high-flying Blake Griffin. ABS-CBN will air the BBVA Rising Stars live while ABS-CBN Sports + Action will air the State Farm All-Star Events and All-Star Game live on Feb. 16 as TJ Manotoc and Boom Gonzales were sent to New York to provide commentary for all the events. (Story by Katherine Solis)