Team LeBron Wins the NBA All Star Game in a Nail biter

On Feb. 20, Team LeBron beat Team Durant in the NBA All Star game thanks to Steph Curry’s incredible shooting.

The NBA holds an All Star game every season to showcase the best players in  the league in one exciting game.

Jairods, Wikimedia Commons

The NBA holds an All Star game every season to showcase the best players in the league in one exciting game.

The NBA 75th anniversary All Star Game was held on Feb. 20 in Cleveland, Ohio. The two teams were Team LeBron, whose roster of notable players included LeBron James, Steph Curry and Giannis Antetokumpo, and Team Durant, whose headliners were Kevin Durant, Joel Embiid and Trae Young. 

For this year’s All Star Game, the NBA decided to continue with their charity format that was unveiled two years ago. “I think that people have been frustrated in the past where it seemed like players weren’t trying,” Sports and Entertainment Marketing teacher Ben Stodola said.  “With added incentives, players are trying more and the money is going to a good cause,” Team Lebron sponsored the I Promise Scholars Program, going head to head against Team Durant, who sponsored the Greater Cleveland Food Bank, to make the most money for their respective charities. For each quarter won, the charity linked with the winning team would receive 100,000 dollars and the team that won the game would also receive an additional 100,000 dollars for their charity. 

Team LeBron started the game off with a statement dunk from Giannis Antetokumpo along with a corner three from Steph Curry. Despite some great scoring Team  Durant—led by Trae Young and his teammate Ja Morant, who recorded multiple dunks that night—Team LeBron won the first quarter 47-45 awarding 100,000 dollars to the I Promise Scholars Program. 

During the second quarter, Team Durant made sure to make their presence felt with Joel Embiid scoring 16 points to help their team win the quarter 49-46 and winning 100,000 dollars for the Greater Cleveland Food Bank. Though Team LeBron lost the quarter, Steph Curry hit six threes in the quarter to tie the All Star record for most threes in a game at nine. The total score at halftime was neck and neck at 94-93 with Team Durant up. 

At halftime, the NBA celebrated their 75th anniversary by paying tribute to the 75 greatest NBA players of all time including Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant and LeBron James. A ceremony was held in which all the players  gathered in the middle of the court and celebrated their extensive accomplishments together. “It’s inspiring, you know — the 75th anniversary which is something special, and those players should be honored for their accomplishments,” senior Faris Jiwad said. 

The third quarter was the most competitive yet, with Steph Curry putting on a show, hitting seven threes in the quarter, bringing his total for the night to 16 shattering the previous record of 9 in a single All Star game. “Curry was sensational, 16 threes — can’t really ask for much more than that,” Jiwad said. Despite his heroic efforts, team Durant was able to keep up and ended up tying the quarter 45-45 and the 100,000 dollars was split between the two charities. 

In the fourth quarter, each team was incentivized even more to win for their charities with a price tag of 200,000 dollars resting on the results of the game. Both teams went back and forth but team LeBron ended up winning the game 163-160, capped off with a game winner from the man himself, LeBron James. 

Steph Curry took home the Kobe Bryant All Star Game MVP with 50 points on the night. “[Steph Curry] is incredible … for as long as I have been watching basketball, probably the best overall shooter I’ve ever seen, the things that he can do has completely changed the game,” Stodola said. 

The All Star game is something that NBA fans look forward to,with good reason. It’s a game where the best players in the world go up against each other, and due to the new charity format, fans know that they will be trying their best. “Because of the charity format, the fourth quarter  gets more intense, defense is being played, and you really get to see the competitive nature of some of the players on the field. It really does showcase the best of the best,” Jiwad said. The charity format makes it so that charities such as the  Cleveland Food Bank, Thurgood Marshall College Fund, and the Mamba and Mambacita Foundation receive money that is raised from the game. 

A combined 750,000 dollars was raised for charity through the 2022 NBA All Star game.