The NBA killed it with the 2020 All-Star Game

February 16, 2020 - 11:58 pm

Was that an all-star game or a playoff game? If you caught the end of the 2020 NBA All-Star Game in Chicago between Team LeBron and Team Giannis, you may not have been able to tell the difference.

It seemed fitting that during a night honoring Kobe Bryant's memory, the players unleashed the "Mamba Mentality" as opposed to the typical, low-effort, coasting through the event.

He would have been proud.

It was hard not to get those pickup basketball vibes. Two captains picking their teams regardless of conference, no clock, a set score up to 157 points, man on man defense, only with the best on the planet going head to head.

To see these superstars drawing charges, playing suffocating defense, and even getting fouled? Add on top of that referees getting yelled at by guys like LeBron James, plays being reviewed, and even coaches and players drawing up plays courtside?

You couldn't ask for a more thrilling all-star game.

The finish was easily the most thrilling part. With no clock and a set score, every shot down the stretch was like a buzzer-beater. Who in a million years would predict the game would be decided on a walk-off free throw? Now that is a bet that would have made you a lot of money.

How leagues can get their stars to try this hard in an exhibition will vary, but this year's NBA All-Star blueprint is a good one.

Playing in honor of Kobe Bryant was a huge motivating factor. But so too was the fact that both teams played for an opportunity to win local Chicago charities a substantial amount of money.

The winner of each quarter would get $100,000 to donate to the charity they represented, and both Team LeBron and Team Giannis were able to win money for the charities they represented. A great cause like that clearly was a part of the increased effort.

Other leagues should really take notice of what the NBA did tonight.

In actuality.....leagues should take a look at everything the NBA is doing. It always seems like they are multiple steps ahead when it comes to the entertainment of their product both on and off the court.

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