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Final Thoughts on All-Star Weekend & How To Improve It

  • Good to see Dwyane Wade prove a point with his MVP trophy that (shocker here) he actually can play well with Lebron James and that he doesn't always need the ball to be effective, it's just a really good idea to let him handle the rock. Anyone who says otherwise comes off as ignorant because it's obvious you haven't see enough of Wade play USA basketball or when he was on stronger Heat squads. That's not what Chauncey Billups thinks and of course his opinion is completely unbiased. "I don't know if they match," he said. "I don't know if they could play together for 82 games. I really don't know. I think they both need the ball in their hands for most of the game. They're both two of the best players in the world. I don't know if that works." It sure worked on Valentine's Day.
  • The media predictably bemoaned the Slam Dunk Contest as a dud (no argument there) but, as usual, failed to offer any ideas as to how to actually improve it. One word: posterize. After all, what makes any in-game dunk extra special? Invite a couple of big guys like Joel Anthony or Chris "Birdman" Anderson, stick them in the paint and give them a big fat cash bonus for blocking these lame dunks that Shannon Brown and Gerald Wallace attempted. If you can't come up with a creative dunk, either because you lack the imagination to do it or because it's all basically been before, then you better jump as high as you can and throw it down as hard as you can or else you'll be the one getting the facial. One dunk still can be solo of course, just don't raise my expectations by running the whole length of the court (I'm looking at you Mr. Brown). Using a teammate for another dunk is fine but it needs to be tweaked. Using a hobbled and static Kobe Bryant to simply loft the ball in the air for a dunk isn't going to cut it. It needs to be mandatory that the teammate is in motion as well, unless you plan on jumping over your teammate or something else really special. As a reference, the only dunk worth a damn during the whole competition was DeMar DeRozan's second dunk with Sonny Weems.
  • For that matter, bring the same big guys over to the 3 Point Contest and have them grab those rebounds. Those ball boys couldn't be more distracting. Tape some real cash to those "money balls" and you'll see some viciousness in the paint!
  • Anyone see the HORSE or Shooting Stars competition? Neither did I. Forget those and give the fans what they want to see. The NBA's most competitive and trash-talking players going at it 1-on-1 or 2-on-2. Bring some of that nasty And-1/street-ball/playground basketball vibe to the All-Star Weekend. If we can't get Lebron vs Wade because they want to "save themselves" for the big event then that's fine. There would be plenty of others lining up ready to play against each other unshackled from the vice that coaches and referees have on them during regular competition. Just imagine the insane pairings there could be. Just off the top of my head I'd have liked to have seen the top two rookies face off for bragging rights - Tyreke Evans vs Brandon Jennings.
  • $1.5 billion dollars for a football stadium? Don't mean to be a Debbie Downer but after seeing the recent destruction of New Orleans and Haiti it just comes off as bloated excess of American sports debauchery. Sorry.