On Sunday the All-Star Game was played at Cowboys Stadium in front of over 108,000 people, the largest group to ever watch a bball game. David Lee, a newbie, tied with Paul Pierce for fewest minutes on the East team with only 12 (however on the West team, Jason Kidd, by choice, only played 6 minutes, plus Chris Kaman of the Clippers only played 11 minutes but not-by-choice). In that short period of time, Lee did score 4 points on 66% shooting, but he also managed to turn it over a pathetic 3 times. Considering the East team only had a total of 18 turnovers, for Lee to commit three of ‘em in such a short period of time is pretty damning.
Of course All-Star games aren’t really for big men. Players don’t have the patience to pass it around until the big man can post up, nor is there usually proper spacing for the big man to work comfortably since teammates don’t regularly play together. To truly be effective as a big man in these types of games, you need to go after the rebounds and create your opportunities. Lee, however, prefers to work from a bit outside and shoot it if his man doesn’t come out. And if his man comes out, he drives in for the layup. However in this situation, if say he drove past Dwight Howard, he then encountered Chris Bosh or say Kevin Garnett at the basket.
Despite the Knicks’ godawful record, they managed to appear in four different events. As mentioned by Chase, Nate Robinson did win the dunk contest again, making history, but it was more ‘cuz everyone else sucked rather than that he did anything phenomenal. The last two events were attended by Danilo Gallinari. Gallo was in both the Rookie-Sophomore Game and the Three-Point Shoot-out. He came out strong at the beginning of the Rookie game, but then, as we Knicks’ fans have seen so many times, he kinda just completely vanished. For the Three-Point Shooting Contest, Gallo had pretty much promised he’d win. However, he then hurt his arm in the last Knicks’ game (in that game he even took his final free throw lefty before exiting for medical attention). Supposedly his arm was still a bit sore, so maybe he had a legit excuse. To me though his problem was the same as in games: a lack of mental focus. He can be great at times, but he can also drift off and be a total non-factor. Actually, the winner, Paul Pierce, who’s not necessarily known as a top three-point shooter, seemed to win partly because he got himself psyched up while shooting and was so intensely focused & driven toward winning.