All-Star Rumors

Vinsanity cited that he was going to do a one-step, 180-degree dunk under the basket (which sounds hella impressive by the way) but decided to go on a different route to increase his chances of winning. “It was ‘ooh-ahh’ for a lot of people but it didn’t feel right. It didn’t have the ‘wowing’ factor. That’s not what I was looking for. I just didn’t have that feel so I just scrapped that dunk,” the NBA icon revealed. “The dunks that I originally had planned, I was like this was not going to win. So I scrapped it right there on the spot. I’m just trying to pull things that I’ve done from times past that I felt would win or present the wow factor.”
Vinsanity cited that he was going to do a one-step, 180-degree dunk under the basket (which sounds hella impressive by the way) but decided to go on a different route to increase his chances of winning. “It was ‘ooh-ahh’ for a lot of people but it didn’t feel right. It didn’t have the ‘wowing’ factor. That’s not what I was looking for. I just didn’t have that feel so I just scrapped that dunk,” the NBA icon revealed. “The dunks that I originally had planned, I was like this was not going to win. So I scrapped it right there on the spot. I’m just trying to pull things that I’ve done from times past that I felt would win or present the wow factor.”
Aaron Gordon has put his displeasure with the 2020 Dunk Contest into a “diss” track titled “9 OUT OF 10,” in which he calls out Dwyane Wade for the vote that helped him lose to Miami’s Derrick Jones Jr. In an epic dunk contest back in February, Gordon dunked over Chance the Rapper (twice) and threw down 360-degree, between-the-leg slams. The battle between Gordon and Jones carried on into a “dunk-off” in which each player had to improvise dunks that hadn’t been rehearsed. For Gordon’s final dunk, he cleared 7-foot-6 Tacko Fall.
Jason Richardson: Yeah, I think I was a little bit underrated. I feel like I should have made the All-Star team a few times. But the game has changed now; it’s different. Because in my era, even if you averaged 20 points, if you didn’t win, it didn’t matter. I understood that part of it. I had a lot of losing years during those times, so people thought it was just “number chasing.” But if you look at it now, there’s a lot of guys who are averaging a ton of points and their team isn’t doing good, but they still get the accolades and they are on the All-Star teams and stuff like that. I think back in my time, it was more team-oriented and all about, “What are you doing to help your team win games?” And so I see the different eras and I understand how the game has changed in that respect.
Storyline: All-Star Selections
Jason Richardson: Well, I think Aaron Gordon has been robbed twice in a row. I might be biased, but I think the dunks he did were unseen and spectacular. He was great. I think he should be a two-time dunk contest winner. I totally believe that. It’s special what he can do. It’s special what most of these guys can do now. I was just talking to a kid yesterday who recognized me when I was working out at the gym. I was telling him how these guys are evolving. It’s just funny how evolved these guys are, how crazy they’re jumping and the tricks they’re coming up with. It’s just amazing.
“If they had kept the voting the way it was years ago when it was like majority fan votes, I definitely would have rejected it,” Fall says. “There is no way I’m going to take the spot of like a Devin Booker, a Bradley Beal, those people that most people feel like should have been an All-Star. And then you have some rookie who barely plays five minutes a game just take a spot. I didn’t want that to happen.”
Storyline: All-Star Selections
The Basketball Tournament, the 64-team, $2 million winner-take-all summer tournament entering its seventh season, will change the rules to reduce the chances of a game ending on free throws, tournament officials told ESPN. If a team commits a foul while in the bonus during the Elam Ending — which has teams play to a target score rather than to the end of a clock — the other team will get only one foul shot, rather than two, and retain possession of the ball, said Jonathan Mugar, TBT’s founder and CEO.
Storyline: Elam Ending
But has the increased attention stemming from Saturday night’s memorable victory over Aaron Gordon of the Orlando Magic changed Jones Jr.? “Man, he walked in and didn’t say nothing to me this morning,” Jimmy Butler joked. “Nah, he’s the same dude. He’s always going to be like that. And I know him: If he goes to the dunk contest next year, he’ll win it again.”
For whatever reason, Indianapolis is a popular place to trash when a big event comes to town. Yahoo! Sports NBA’s LaJethro Jenkins became the most recent critic. A video was posted Thursday night by Jenkins with a plea to NBA commissioner Adam Silver to move the 2021 All-Star game along with a petition to relocate the game. Yahoo deleted the tweet, which included an expletive, a couple of hours later. The petition included the words: “It’s just a joke. The NBA couldn’t care less. Relax.” The petition has 16 signatures.
Hoosiers took matters into their own hands by creating a petition of their own requesting Jenkins and Yahoo Sports NBA be kept from attending the 2021 NBA All-Star game in Indianapolis. The petition, which has 196 signatures, asks the NBA to revoke their credentials and offers a parting shot of its own. “And if this triggers you, relax Mr. Jenkins & YahooSportsNBA. It’s just a joke”
This past weekend’s viewership of the 2020 NBA All-Star events were up double digits in comparison to last year. In Canada, the simulcast coverage of the 2020 NBA All-Star events were up 28% in average audience compared to last season. Nearly 3.5 million (!) Canadians watched at least some portion of the NBA All-Star events, up 14% from last year. In addition to that, the hours watched for all programming was up 37% compared to last year.
Much like in 2016 when Gordon was the tough-luck loser to two-time champion Zach LaVine, Gordon has spent the past few days dealing with the fall out of an event he’s always thought he was destined to win at some point in his basketball career. In the subsequent four days since the Dunk Contest ended, Gordon has heard from countless numbers of fans, fellow NBA players and celebrities in the music and movie industries about a result they felt was wrong. That, in a weird and twisted sort of way, has helped to soothe Gordon’s disappointment over the results, he said. “I definitely feel some type of way about it,’’ Gordon said while carefully choosing his words. “I’m definitely kind of irritated a little bit and a little frustrated, as well. “But it’s OK, it’s really OK,’’ he added. “We’ve got to move on because it’s over now. I think it will be talked about for years and years and years, which is really cool. But at the same time, it’s over.’’
Storyline: All-Star Contests
For each All-Star weekend, the NBA works with the local teams and government organizations – in this case, the Bulls, Chicago city officials, and Chicago Sports Commission – to plan events, social responsibility initiatives and find ways to leave a lasting impact to the community and fans, Kelly Flatow, NBA executive vice president of global events, said. “Each All-Star Game is designed to highlight the personality and character of the team and city,” Flatow said. “We aim to put fans first and design programming that engages and inspires fans in the local market as well as those who travel to the city to enjoy this global celebration of the game.“
Including the United Center store, Rank and Rally had eight locations across town, representing 17,000 square feet of floor space. Each space was individually designed with merchandise suited for the area around it. “We leaned heavily on creating an experience with a curated approach,” Beck said. “Any fans spending time around the city were not experiencing the same shopping experience.” Each shop had a portion devoted to the official NBA All-Star shop, but there were also brand pop-ups and experiences, Beck said. The stores sold through Monday after the All-Star Game. Within the United Center Madhouse Team Store, Rank and Rally partnered with ‘47 Brand, Mitchell & Ness, Herschel, Stahls, and Sportique for pop-ups.
The team Michael Jordan owns played host to the 2019 All-Star Game in Charlotte, N.C. The team Jordan led to six championships in the 1990s just played host to the 2020 All-Star Game in Chicago. Jordan made the briefest of public appearances last year, when he was essentially considered the All-Star grand marshal, and then stayed completely out of public view this year. Jordan defenders always tell me, when I bring this stuff up, that I cannot possibly understand how hard it is for His Airness to put himself out there. He’s a very private person, they always say, and makes it his mission to avoid the spotlight.
We talked to Dr. J — who was in the building for the dunk contest — at Reagan National Airport in Washington D.C. on Monday … and we asked the hoops legend if the Orlando Magic star was robbed by the judges in Chi-town. “I don’t know if robbed is the right term, if it had ended in a tie, I don’t think anybody would’ve been upset. But, a contest like that going into basically 2 overtimes. Third overtime. You hate to have a loser.” BUT, forced to pick a winner, Dr. J — who won the inaugural ABA Dunk Contest in 1976 — says Gordon’s final dunk was justtttttttt a little better than Derrick Jones Jr.’s jam. “I think [Gordon’s] last dunk was cleaner. Neither one of them were 50’s because they had shot their load in terms of their best stuff.”
Storyline: All-Star Contests
Those numbers correlate with the NBA hosting more competitive events while honoring Kobe Bryant, who died three weeks ago along with his 13-year-old daughter and seven others in a helicopter crash. Although average viewership across ABC, ESPN and TNT have suffered a 13-percent decrease this season, the NBA experienced other relative improvements in recent months. Average viewership on ESPN and TNT increased by a combined six percent in December. Those viewers then increased by an average of 27 percent on ESPN, TNT and NBA TV in January.
Those numbers have not entirely offset the NBA’s declining television rating stemminged from either cord-cutting, downgraded cable packages and extensive injuries to the league’s star players. But those numbers left the NBA feeling validated on downplaying the league’s early-season bumps. “We may be affected by it a little bit more on properties because we have such a young fanbase,” NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said in a press conference during All-Star weekend. “But I am very confident we can work through it.”
Storyline: TV Ratings

His most defining characteristic, though, is forever as a blood-thirsty competitor. If you were a screaming teenager wearing a blue Team LeBron T-shirt throughout the game, Paul is the one player you wanted in your corner. He was in his element, licking his lips when he had to switch onto Giannis Antetokounmpo late in the game, drilling several kick-out threes that helped his team mount their comeback. “Chris Paul is a big reason for the win,” Frank Vogel said after the game. “He told me early in the day that he wasn’t one of those vets that just likes to take a rest in a game like this, that he wants to come in and win a game and help our guys win a game. All the young guys throughout the course of the game, every time they made a mistake or didn’t play defense, he was yelling at them. So he got us — not only got us to the finish line but also provided great leadership and some big plays in that fourth quarter down the stretch.”
In case you missed it, Paul is 34. He also crammed home a lob. This isn’t supposed to happen, but a vegan diet and relatively new off-season training regimen has granted sips from the fountain of youth. “I think I’m my hardest critic,” Paul said afterwards. “I push myself more than anybody in here could ever do. So for me, it’s always about the journey. It’s about working hard, and it’s the analytics and the statistics that say at this age you can do this or you can do that. Look at my brother Bron. Every year they say he’s going to slow down, right? And then what?”