by Prineet Parhar ‘23
Published Mar. 22nd, 2021
The 2021 NBA All-Star game was held on March 7 in Atlanta. Many players and coaches were unhappy with the NBA’s decision to allow this game to take place. During a season in which teams were sometimes playing five basketball games in just one week, many stars and coaches were looking at this week as a time to rest and get healthy for the second half of the season.
Amongst the critics of the All-Star game was Team Captain LeBron James, seventeen-time All-Star and team captain for the fourth straight year. With his first selection, he took two-time NBA MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo. His performance during the game was legendary, as he became the only player to not miss a basket during the entire game while taking more than ten shots. He had a game-high 35 points on his way to the All-Star game MVP and a crushing 20 point victory over Team Kevin Durant.
Kevin Durant, eleven-time All-Star and two-time game MVP, was voted team captain of the East. Unfortunately, he was not able to participate in the event due to injury. With his first pick, he selected his teammate Kyrie Irving, another previous game MVP. His performance was also stellar, as he scored twenty-four points while dishing out 12 assists to his teammates.
Even though Antetokounmpo won game MVP, the main story of the game was about the masterful shooting of Damian Lillard and Stephen Curry. Damian Lillard scored thirty-two points, while Stephen Curry had twenty-eight points of his own. Although both were on the same team, it seemed like both were competing to see who could make the farthest shot. Both Lillard and Curry poured in eight threes, tying for the second most three-pointers in All-Star game history. Lillard’s effortless half-court shot was what ended the game, giving Team James the point threshold of 170 needed to win the game.
This game also featured four first-time All-Star selections: Jaylen Brown, Zach LaVine, Julius Randle, and Zion Williamson. Jaylen Brown had the most impressive game out of these players, as he scored twenty-two points and grabbed five rebounds on the way to a win.
This year’s All-Star game consisted of a mix of long-time veterans as well as new talent. Regardless, the players that were chosen to play in it did not disappoint, putting on a show of athleticism and skill en route to a great weekend.