Gear up for unpredictable and fun All-Star Saturday

Published February 18, 2023, 3:30 PMJon Carlos Rodriguez

NBA All-Star Saturday action begins tomorrow at 9:00 AM.

What’s up with the 3-Point Contest?

A new 3-point champion will be crowned at the 2023 Starry 3-Point Contest on All-Star Saturday. Last year’s winner, Karl-Anthony Towns, is out with an injury and won’t be able to defend the title.

Those in the running are a collection of big names who all have the potential to shoot lights out. There’s a participant for each kind of shooter prototype. Need clutch? Damian Lillard will put on Dame Time at the contest for the third time in his career. Streaky shooters? Kevin Huerter and Tyler Herro will represent. Pacers teammates Buddy Hield and Tyrese Haliburton are gunning against each other.

Lauri Markkanen and Julius Randle (who replaced the injured Anfernee Simons) will show up for the bigs while Jayson Tatum will try to add to his expanding resume with a 3-point crown. The final results will be unpredictable, but the scorched nets will be a guarantee.

What’s up with the Slam Dunk Contest?

Participants at this year’s Slam Dunk Contest aren’t as high-profile as the shooters in the 3-Point Contest, which should be enough reason for them to go extra.

The high-flyers who’ll be putting on a show are Jericho Sims, Mac McClung, Kenyon Martin Jr., and Trey Murphy III. 

Here’s Murphy with a quick preview of his hops at the Rising Stars game:

Will Murphy take the dunk crown or will Jericho Sims defend the crown on behalf of his New York teammate and reigning champ Obi Toppin?

Kenyon Martin Jr. and Mac McClung will no doubt bring the shock and awe to make things interesting.

Storyline to watch out for

All-Star Saturday is the perfect segue into the All-Star Game, where the league’s biggest stars show up to perform. What’s fun about these events is the inevitable air salute to the past and the setting of the high bar for the future. 


Dame is the fave to win the 3-Point Contest, but guys like Huerter and Herro are sneaky underdogs to snatch the crown.

For the dunk contest, McClung’s got both the tricks and the athleticism to pull it off.

That said, the appeal of All-Star Saturday is its unpredictability. The best way to enjoy it is to not make picks and instead bet on a fun, entertaining time.