LOCAL National Basketball Association (NBA) aficionados wanting to witness the about-to-happen 2017 NBA All-Star Weekend will be able to do so on free TV with ABS-CBN Channel 2 and S+A set to air it every step of the way.
Happening at the Smoothie King Center in New Orleans, home of the Pelicans team in The Association, ABS-CBN’s local broadcasting of the NBA Midseason Classic will see TJ Manotoc and Boom Gonzalez bring the festivities direct from the United States.
The coverage begins on Saturday, Feb. 18, beginning at 10 a.m. over at ABS-CBN Ch. 2 with the Rising Stars Challenge that will feature the league’s young players divided as Team USA and Team World.
Team USA is bannered by Minnesota’s Karl-Anthony Towns and Phoenix’s Devin Booker. Accompanying them are Malcolm Brogdon (Milwaukee), D’Angelo Russell and Brandon Ingram (LA Lakers), Marquess Chriss (Phoenix), Frank Kaminsky (Charlotte), Jahlil Okafor (Philadelphia), Jonathan Simmons (San Antonio) and Myles Turner (Indiana).
Team World, meanwhile, will be led by New York’s Kristaps Porzingis of Latvia and to be joined by Australian Dante Exum (Utah), Bahamas’ Buddy Hield (New Orleans), Canadians Trey Lyles (Utah) and Jamal Murray (Denver), Serbian Nikola Jokic (Denver), Spain’s Willy Hernangomez (New York), Lithuanian Domantas Sabonis and Spaniard Alex Abrines (OKC) and Croatia’s Dario Saric (Philadelphia).
On Sunday, Feb. 19, S+A will air the NBA All-Star Saturday starting at 9 a.m. that will showcase the skills challenge, three-point shootout and slam dunk contest.
The Skills Challenge will pit big men Anthony Davis (New Orleans), Porzingis, DeMarcus Cousins (Sacramento) and Jokic against the team of smaller guys of Gordon Hayward (Utah), Booker, John Wall (Washington) and Isaiah Thomas (Boston)
In the Three-Point Contest, Klay Thompson (Golden State) will try to defend his title against CJ McCollum (Portland), Kyle Lowry (Toronto), Eric Gordon (Houston), Kyrie Irving (Cleveland), Kemba Walker (Charlotte), Nick Young (LA Lakers) and Wesley Matthews (Dallas).
The Slam Dunk Contest, meanwhile, will see Orlando’s Aaron Gordon try to get the title that narrowly eluded him last year against a field that also counts DeAndre Jordan (LA Clippers), Glenn Robinson III (Indiana) and Derrick Jones, Jr. (Phoenix).
Capping ABS-CBN’s NBA All-Star Weekend coverage is the main All-Star Game on Monday, Feb. 20, beginning at 9 a.m. over S+A.
The East starters are LeBron James and Irving of the world champions Cleveland Cavaliers, Demar DeRozan of the Toronto Raptors, Giannis Antetokounmpo of the Milwaukee Bucks and Jimmy Butler of the Chicago Bulls. Reserves are Lowry, Thomas, Wall, Walker, Paul George of the Indiana Pacers, Paul Millsap of the Atlanta Hawks, and Kevin Love of Cleveland. Love was replaced by Carmelo Anthony as the former underwent knee surgery recently.
In the West, starters are Stephen Curry and Kevin Durant of the Golden State Warriors, James Harden of the Houston Rockets, Kawhi Leonard of the San Antonio Spurs and Davis of hosts New Orleans Pelicans. Reserves are Russell Westbrook of the Oklahoma City Thunder, Thompson and Draymond Green of Golden State, Hayward, Marc Gasol of the Memphis Grizzlies, Cousins, and Jordan.