NBA All-Star Three-Point Contest: Selecting the Sharpshooter Who Will Win
The NBA All-Star game is more about the entertainment then the actual talent on the floor. Games are played with no defense, and the celebrities usual get more attention than the actual players.
If there is one event on the slate that is all about talent, it’s the Foot Locker 3-Point Contest. Draining the long ball takes some true talent and winning this event is never easy.
Here is a look at the field and the odds on favorite to win the contest.
Rules for the Event
First the rules as listed by NBA.com. The players will compete in the two-round competition with the top three finishers from the first round advancing to the finals. Five shooting stations will be set up around the three-point line, with four Official Spalding NBA game balls worth one point each and one Spalding NBA All-Star 2011 commemorative red, white and blue "money ball" worth two points at each location. Each player will have one minute to shoot as many balls as he can. In the final round, players will shoot in ascending order of first-round scores.
Now on to the players-
Kevin Durant (Oklahoma City Thunder)
Durant is the future of the NBA and has the skill set to win almost any completion, but not this one. The oddsmakers were being generous by labeling Durant at 2.5:1 to win the 3-point shootout. Durant is no specialist and struggles to hit the three. He is shooting 33.8 percent this year from beyond the arc which is three points lower than the league average.
The thought is nice that this up and coming youngster can win it, but he should stick to scoring titles because he won’t win this title.
Daniel Gibson (Cleveland Cavaliers)
Daniel Gibson is one of the smallest competitors in this contest and the youngest as well coming in at the young age of 24. He is the long shot in this contest with odds at 5:1. While he will most likely be star struck and just happy to be there, the fans in Cleveland deserve something to cheer about this season.
It would only be better if Gibson could have faced off against LeBron in this contest. While it would be a nice story for Cleveland, Gibson won’t win this contest.
James Jones (Miami Heat)
James Jones is another underdog that will try and capture the title from the experienced sharp shooters. The odds on Jones are 5:1 matching the biggest odds in the tournament.
Jones can drain the deep shot from the corners and should not be taken lightly. In fact he barely takes anything but three point shots from the floor. Playing with the Big 3 in Miami he is lucky to get any shots at all, but he is an outstanding 42% from the floor.
Jones will go deeper than most think, but he will not be able to win the title.
Paul Pierce (Boston Celtics)
Pierce is surprisingly not the favorite to win the title after he had a stunning performance last year in Dallas to win the title. The latest odds as posted by Hollywood Sportsbook have Pierce at 4:1 to win the title in consecutive years.
Going back-to-back in this event is not as rare as it seems. It has been accomplished six times dating back to 1986 and it was recently accomplished in 2007 and 2008 when Jason Kapono won the title in consecutive years.
While the odds of 4:1 are quite nice, Pierce won’t be able to bring in the title again this year against this impressive field.
Ray Allen (Boston Celtics)
Ray Allen recently became the most prolific three-point shooter in NBA history so it is no shock to see the gunner listed as the favorite to win this contest at 2:1.
Allen is no stranger to this competition as he won the title in 2001 as a member of the Milwaukee Bucks. Allen may have extra incentive to win this year since he is the oldest player in the field and was personally challenged by teammate Paul Pierce.
In fact this is the first time in NBA 3-point history that two players from the same team will compete in this contest.
Dorell Wright (Golden State Warriors)
The odds on Wright to win the contest are 5:1 matching Jones and Gibson as the long shot to win the title, but he is being overlooked in this contest.
He shoots over 40% from behind the 3-point line and he is leading the league with 135 three-point field goals made. Wright is in the middle of a breakout season with the Warriors and will be the home team favorite in this contest.
The fans of LA can’t root for the Celtics to win the title, so Wright is the next best option.
This is a dream come true for Wright who always wanted to be in this contest and on Saturday night, he will win it.
Matt Regaw is a B/R Featured Columnist and the founder of BookieBlitz.com, your one-stop shop for sports articles, previews and predictions. Feel free to contact Matt at firstname.lastname@example.org.