The West took home the victory in the 2015 NBA All-Star Celebrity Game on Friday night inside Madison Square Garden, defeating the East, 59-51.
The West dominated much of the first half, with East head coach Mike Greenberg completely out of his depth. In comparison, his Mike & Mike counterpart, Mike Golic, was thriving in his role as head coach of the West.
At halftime, the West led, 32-24, which didn't properly illustrate the gap between the two teams.
Whatever Greenberg told his team in the locker room, though, it worked in the second half, as the East mounted a furious comeback, sparked in large part by the Atlanta Dream's Shoni Schimmel. Frank Isola of the New York Daily News questioned whether Schimmel got a little too overconfident late in the game:
The East got to within two points, 53-51, with under a minute left in the game, but the West was able to ice the game away at the foul line.
Kevin Hart earned Most Valuable Player in a losing effort, which CBS Sports' Chris Towers felt was another reason to ditch fan voting in All-Star Games:
Hart promptly announced his retirement as well:
Although Hart's antics closed out an enjoyable game, the event began with a somewhat somber tone, as ESPN ran a tribute to Stuart Scott, who passed away in January. Madison Square Garden also honored the former ESPN anchor, per ESPN's Mike Soltys:
Scott's two daughters were also summoned to the center of the court to receive an autographed basketball from all of the participants , per Josh Krulewitz of ESPN:
His eldest daughter, Taelor, lightened the mood when she told ESPN's Sage Steele that her dad helped her meet Beyonce during one All-Star Weekend, joking that her life has been downhill ever since.
Once the game actually tipped off, it didn't take long for things to devolve into downright silliness.
One player not taking the game lightly, however, was Mo'ne Davis:
Davis became a household name after her performance in the 2014 Little League World Series. Not only is the 13-year-old an ace on the baseball diamond, but she's also a star on the hardwood who dreams of playing for the Connecticut Huskies.
If Huskies head coach Geno Auriemma tuned into Friday's game, he'll have liked what he saw from Davis, in particular when she spun around Hart and scored with a right-handed layup:
Hart was a bit befuddled after the bucket:
Although Davis stole the show, Memphis Grizzlies owner Robert Pera might have been the biggest surprise of the night.
Pera is extremely passionate about the game and fancies himself quite the player. Friday was the first time many fans had seen him in action, and it was hard not to be impressed with his game.
Geoff Calkins of The Commercial Appeal in Memphis compared the cultural impact of Pera's New York debut to that of The Doors:
Pera had the hot hand, and the only problem he ran into was his teammates' inability to pick out the right pass:
After Friday night, Ray Allen might not be the most coveted free agent in the NBA. Don't be surprised if Pera has a couple of one- or two-year deals on the table after All-Star Weekend.
One of the not-so-good moments from the celebrity game came when Grey's Anatomy star Jesse Williams suffered what appeared to be a somewhat serious leg injury:
ESPN.com's Royce Young noted how even an actor couldn't be spared from the basketball gods after what's been an injury-plagued season:
It's a good thing Williams works with a bunch of doctors for a living. He posted an Instagram photo after the game to say that he's OK.
All in all, the 2015 All-Star Celebrity Game was a fun way to kick off the weekend, and luckily, nobody got seriously hurt.
And with Hart's retirement, it was the end of an era.