Tony Parker will defend his title in the Taco Bell Skills Challenge during All-Star Saturday night in Houston, and he’ll have some exciting players joining him in the event.
The remainder of the field will consist of Jrue Holiday of the Philadelphia 76ers, Brandon Knight of the Detroit Pistons, Damian Lillard of the Portland Trail Blazers, Jeremy Lin of the Houston Rockets, and Jeff Teague of the Atlanta Hawks.
This is the obstacle course style event that puts some of the league’s quickest guards through the paces, with the player that gets through the course the quickest being declared the winner.
Steve Nash and Dwyane Wade are the only players to win the Skills Challenge twice each, so that gives Parker something to shoot for.
The key to this event is, quite simply, not messing up at any of the challenge’s many stops. The bounce pass through the hoop on the floor is one of the tougher parts, as is the jumper from the top of the key. If you can knock those down on the first (or even second) try and hustle through the rest of the course, you’ve got more than a legitimate shot.
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Everyone in the NBA — heck, nearly everyone living in the Western hemisphere — knew Kyrie Irving wanted out of Cleveland. That should kill the Cavaliers’ leverage and make it hard to get enough quality back.
New GM Koby Altman — the guy thrust into the job when David Griffin was shown the door — pulled it off brilliantly.
That’s what I talk about in this new PBT Extra. With Isaiah Thomas and Jae Crowder, the Cavaliers remain the team to beat in the East this season. The Brooklyn Nets pick gives them flexibility going forward, whatever LeBron James decides to do next season.
First time at the plate in the big leagues and Altman crushed it to straight away center field.
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That is an incredible fact, one which speaks to LeBron James‘ cachet. The Cavs are emphasizing this season, LeBron’s last before a player option, by loading up with veterans Thomas and Crowder. With LeBron still reigning in Cleveland, the Celtics are delaying their peak by acquiring the younger Irving.
Adding to the intrigue: the Cavs and Celtics are still favored to meet in this year’s conference finals. At minimum, they’ll face off in a(n even more) highly anticipated opening-night matchup.