What to Watch For: NBA All-Star 2015

Every year NBA All-Star Weekend approaches and the excitement rises. Everyone gets excited to see the stars of the NBA come together on one big stage to show out.

But every year, after looking back, nearly all of the excitement that people had hoped for takes place on Saturday night.

This year, Saturday night impressed us once again. We had Houston Rockets point guard Patrick Beverley coming from behind and inexplicably winning the Taco Bell Skills Challenge, Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry hitting 13 straight three’s at one point to win the Foot Locker Three-Point Contest, and then, to culminate it all, we had Minnesota Timberwolves guard Zach LaVine put on one of the best Dunk Contest performances of all-time as he dominated the field.

But tonight is the All-Star Game. Unfortunately, mostly due to injuries, the game doesn’t hold as much intrigue as it usually does. Still, that doesn’t mean we can’t have a few exciting moments, so if you do tune in tonight, here’s what to watch for.

What to Watch For:

The Eastern Conference has much less to offer in this game in terms of excitement and talent, but there are still a few players who could make a splash.

Cleveland Cavaliers teammates LeBron James and Kyrie Irving were made for All-Star games. James is the best player in the world and just last week talked about how he wished he could play 82 games a season in Madison Square Garden. After a statement like that, it wouldn’t be shocking to see James take over this game and show New York what some good basketball looks like.

Irving has arguably the best handles in the NBA, and in a game where defense isn’t an issue, don’t be shocked if Irving catches fire from the three-point line or breaks a couple ankles on his way to a big scoring night.

The rest of the East is filled with either solid or injured players. Hometown star Carmelo Anthony is only planning on playing a couple minutes because of an injury and while the Atlanta Hawks have four representatives, none of them are going to shock the world with something we’ve never seen before. A game like this is where somebody like the Pistons’ Andre Drummond would have thrived, but there’s always next year.

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On the flip side, the Western Conference should be the team to keep your eye on if you’re looking for highlights. Despite high-flyers Blake Griffin and Anthony Davis backing out of the game due to injury, the West still has a plethora of guys who can fill the stat sheet and light up the highlight tape.

Guards Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson and Russell Westbrook can all take over a game, seemingly at will, whenever they want. It wouldn’t shock anyone if either Curry or Thompson caught fire and the game began looking like the three-point contest once again. Just as it doesn’t seem implausible that Westbrook could dunk a ball so hard that he breaks the rim in half, as he nearly did against the Pistons earlier this season.

In the frontcourt, keep an eye out for DeMarcus Cousins. He’s coming into this game with a huge chip on his shoulder after only being selected as an injury replacement, and with the lack of frontcourt athleticism on both teams, Boogie could easily take over this game. In fact, he may be a dark horse MVP candidate.

Even with all this said, the All-Star game may not be as good as All-Star Saturday night but there will still be some exciting moments. If you want to see some good end-to-end action then tune in for the fourth quarter, because if it’s a close game, that’s when some actual basketball will be played.

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