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2016 All-Star Weekend -- Visiting U.S. ​t​eam ​e​dges World Team in Rising Star​s​ Challenge, 157-154


PhilBoxing.com




TORONTO​ --- Youth was served on when the U.S. team faced the World team in the Rising Stars Challenge at the Ricoh Coliseum on Friday evening, one of the feature events of the NBA All-Star Weekend 2016.

Filled with high flying dunks and a flurry long range jumpers, it was a high scoring 157-154 win for Team U.S. This was the second year of this format, which pitted first and second year players from the U.S. against those from around the world.

In an All-Star break where the focus has been a fond farewell to NBA legend Kobe Bryant, the game was an exhibition of the future stars of the league, many of whom were toddlers when Bryant was drafted in 1996.

The Challenge’s Most Valuable Player was forward Zach LaVine of the Minnesota Timberwolves, who notched 30 points, 7 rebounds, and 4 assists. LaVine will be in action again on Saturday night, when he defends his Slam Dunk crown.

Two players from Team World also had 30 points each, the New York Knicks’ rookie sensation Kristaps Porzingis (Latvia) and the Denver Nuggets’ Emmanuel Mudiay (DR Congo).

Though he played for Team U.S., Los Angeles Laker guard Jordan Clarkson could also claim “World” status, as his mother is from the Philippines. Clarkson scored 25 points and had 5 rebounds and 5 assists. Of his first All-Star Weekend he said, “It’s been fun, a cool experience…. We were just going out there and having fun, just living in the experience of the game.”

The host country was represented by three of its own, last season’s Rookie of the Year Andrew Wiggins (Minnesota Timberwolves), Dwight Powell (Dallas Mavericks), and Trey Lyles (Utah Jazz), each of whose every move was cheered on by the crowd.

Being with Wiggins’ in his hometown has been a treat for LaVine, his teammate on the Timberwolves. “It was cool. He’s a rock star in his hometown.“


Click here to view a list of other articles written by Adeline Deladisma.


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