All-Star weekend is upon us, with the BBVA rising star game done, it is time for the second night of the weekend to begin. Saturday night is where legends are made at the free throw line and with honey dips. Every basketball fan hopes for a great weekend, and there is no reason to doubt that this weekend will lack any excitement. But with all the competition comes the time to make predictions.
Contestants: Stephen Curry, James Harden, Klay Thompson, Khris Middleton, Kyle Lowry, JJ Redick, C.J. McCollum, Devin Booker.
Prediction: This one is pretty straightforward; it is just too difficult to vote against Curry. Curry got the monkey off his back last year and is now participating in his 5th 3-point contest so he also has experience on his side. However there will be some excitement from this event and I am expecting two surprises from the contest this year. One is that I don’t see Harden performing well. This may not be a surprise after Harden only got 15 points last year and I don’t expect him to fair any better this time around. The simple explanation is that for all his talent James harden is primarily an off the dribble shooter, which is never advantageous in the contest. Also he is out of shape this year, no matter how well he is playing this year, which will be more of a factor than people anticipate. The other surprise will come from the youngest contestant ever, Devin Booker. Booker has been the one bright spot for the Suns this year, and his shooting touch is incredible and fun to watch. I think he will not be dissuaded from a big showing because of the bright lights of All-Star and I think he will even make it to the finals.
Contestants: Anthony Davis, DeMarcus Cousins, Draymond Green, Karl-Anthony Towns, Jordan Clarkson, Emmanuel Mudiay, Isiah Thoms, C.J. McCollum.
Prediction: Call me stupid, but I am excited for the skills challenge, the event that many despise happens to be something that I have always loved. This year they have made the addition of allowing big men to compete. This is something I have waited for since I first heard the idea on The Starters and can’t wait to see it come to fruition. There is still some ambiguity surrounding how the contest will be set up. Whether it will be bigs vs. bigs and guards vs. guards initially and then the winners at each position will face off, or if it will be bigs against guards from the get go is still in question. Whatever way goes down I predict that Draymond Green will walk away with the prize. He runs fast breaks, he shoots, and he can pass. Though this all supports a Draymond victory I’m saying this more out of love for Draymond than anything else, but with the year he’s having, what reason is there to doubt him.
Contestants: Zack Lavine, Aaron Gordon, Andre Drummond, Will Barton.
Prediction: The dunk contest has been shaky over the last few years, with fans shortly removed from the team contest just two short years ago. Last year saw the recovery of the contest; with the rules going reverting back to the way things were before the NBA decided to make alterations. Everyone admired Zach LaVine’s showmanship last year and this year will be even better, as LaVine is facing a field of better competitors this yea and LaVine will have to look into his bag to stir the same emotion from the collective conscious that he brought last year. However, LaVine knows how to pander to the crowd and I fully expect to see some Toronto oriented themes in his dunks. Aside from that I feel that Aaron Gordon will be the last place contestant in this year’s contest. Not to take anything away from him, but he is more of a power dunker and I don’t see him being able to keep up with the hops, creativity, and overall efforts of the other contestants. I fully expect Drummond to make it to the finals against LaVine with LaVine getting the best of Drummond to retain is crown.
 I personally think he will get 13 this time around, the number that he loves so much continues to haunt him.
 Something all NBA fans hope to forget.
 Vince Carter throwbacks anyone?
 Think of Kenneth Faried’s performance in 2013. HOverall it was pretty good, just not enough to get out of the first round.