NBA All-Star Game 2020: Team LeBron wins the crazy game
Published by Giselle
February 17, 2020 2:53 pm
Team LeBron won the 69th All-Star Game with 157:155 against Team Giannis. Thanks to the new format, both teams fought a hard battle with intensive defense for the victory in the fourth quarter. Kawhi Leonard won the award as Kobe Bryant MVP of the All-Star Game.
The claw finished the game as top scorer of the evening with 30 points and was really on fire from downtown (8/14 threesome), especially at the beginning. LeBron James and Chris Paul contributed 23 points each for the winning team. Anthony Davis still came to 20 points.
On the side of Team Giannis, the Greek Freak was the best man with 25 points and 11 rebounds. Also, Kemba Walker (23), Joel Embiid (22 and 10) and Rudy Gobert (21 and 11) were also convincing. The same was true for the new format of the All-Star Game, which provided high tension in the fourth quarter.
As expected, however, the evening began with an emotional tribute to Kobe Bryant. The Lakers legend was killed a few weeks ago in a tragic helicopter crash together with his daughter Gianna and seven other people.
“We will never see another basketball player like Kobe Bryant,” said Magic Johnson at the start of a long ceremony in honor of Kobe and also in honor of David Stern, who also died a few weeks ago. After 8 seconds of silence, Jennifer Hudson dedicated an emotional tribute song to the Lakers legend.
This was followed by an ode from the rapper Common to the host city of Chicago and also to Bryant before he rapped to introduce the participants in the All-Star Game 2020. Team Giannis was joined by Trae Young, Kemba Walker, Pascal Siakam, Joel Embiid, and of course, the Greek Freak. On the other side Luka Doncic, James Harden, Kawhi Leonard, Anthony Davis, and LeBron James were allowed to start for Team LeBron from the beginning.
All-Star Game: Team LeBron and Team Giannis with blowouts
The team of the Lakers star in the blue jerseys with the number 2 in memory of Gianna Bryant got the better start directly. The claw initiated the sporting aspect of the evening with a triple, the teammates of Team LeBron let themselves be infected by the hot little hand of Kawhi and sank 9 triples (18 attempts) in the first quarter alone.
Although Kemba, in particular, tried to hold back with some of his triples, Team LeBron pulled away in the middle of the round with a 9-0 run. The 15-point lead was too much for Team Giannis, who ran up with Kobes number 24. Team LeBron finished the first quarter with a nice Alley-Oop-Festival and won the first mini-match with 53:41.
The first $100,000 went to the Chicago Scholars charity supported by Team LeBron. Obviously, Giannis didn’t want to let this go for long. The Bucks star scored 14 of his team’s first 22 points in the second quarter, with only one open Windmill Dunk going to the ring.
On the other side, Chris Paul responded with an alley-oop-dunk – his first slam since December 2015! When the starters of Team LeBron returned around the still red-hot Kawhi, Team Giannis’ lead melted away a little. In the end, the Greek clearly secured the second section (51:30), Young set the exclamation mark with a half-court buzzer-beater. The 100,000 dollars from Team Giannis went to After School Matters.
All-Star Game 2020: Pure suspense in the fourth quarter
The third quarter started with less spectacle, but with more fouls and a few free throws. A windmill-dunk by Joel Embiid, a cracking slam by LeBron and an alley-op by Rudy Gobert, then swept the fans off their seats again. A Jokic-three brought Team LeBron one point in front 22.2 seconds before the end of the section.
With another $100,000 at stake for Charity, Team Giannis made a turnaround, and after an intentional foul, Russell Westbrook raised Westbrook from the free-throw line to 41-39. Another alley-op by Gobert equalized the score, Westbrook’s potential mini-game winner only ending up on the ring. The winner of the $100,000 was, therefore, only played out in the fourth quarter.
The final round started with a score of 133-124 for Team Giannis, and in honour of Kobe, 24 points were added to the leading team’s score to set a target score. So which team would reach 157 points first (without gameclock) would leave the All-Star Game as the winner and receive another $300,000 for charity.
Anthony Davis brings victory for Team LeBron off the line
This prompted both teams to play with significantly increased intensity in defense. Giannis even got several blocks out against the King himself and AD, and Kyle Lowry pulled an offensive foul. Nevertheless, Team LeBron got the better start and had evaporated the gap relatively quickly (146-146).
Afterwards, it remained exciting – and hard-fought! With only three points left to win, LeBron decided to drive, but Giannis again blocked his layup. In response, James tried a triple from the logo to win, but the ball only landed on the ring. Things went better for Harden shortly after, but his Downtown game-winner was whistled back – once again, Lowry pulled an offensive foul!
The Raptors-Guard got an offensive foul on the other side, LeBron set 156:153 by drive and dunk, before Embiid came off the line. The next basket was to decide the game – and it came from the free-throw line for this intense finish: AD made the victory perfect for Team LeBron after a foul by Lowry, but only in the second attempt.
All-Star Game 2020: The voices of the game
Kawhi Leonard (Team LeBron): “My goal was not to win the MVP. I hit my first two throws and then continued throwing. When I kept hitting, I said to myself, “I’m going to try to win the MVP.”
Joel Embiid (Team Giannis): “It’s annoying that we lost, but for me, it was probably the best All-Star Game ever. Everyone played hard.”
The star of the game
Giannis Antetokounmpo. Although neither the win nor the MVP trophy went to the Greek, the Bucks star was, in part, the outstanding figure of the All-Star Game. First, he took complete control of the offensive in the second quarter. Then he also set the course defensively in the fourth round. With 25 points, 11 boards, 4 assists, and 3 blocks, a strong stat line also speaks for Giannis.
The action of the game
The stars of the Association also provided highlights in the 69th All-Star Game as if on an assembly line. Exemplarily, the Windmill-Dunk by Embiid after a wonderful Behind-the-Back-Insight by Kemba or several LeBron-Dunks should be mentioned here. The award in this category also goes to the Defense because of its rarity value.
The Greek Freak first showed a brilliant block against the fade-away of LeBron in the final section, and shortly after, he cleared Davis in a dunk attempt. Defense highlights in the All-Star Game – an expression of an extremely entertaining fourth quarter!