I don’t care what anybody says – NBA All-Star Weekend is fun. The association does a phenomenal job year after year to distribute a solid product that’s exciting for every demographic of basketball fans.
Sure, it’s being held in Cleveland this year – which might not be the best place for it, but the stars will still come out and put on a show. Stay tuned later in the week for my preview of Sunday’s game.
Jaylen Brown after the streak-snapping loss to the Pistons:
?Full Presser: https://t.co/GUvtbj8Jal
— Celtics on CLNS (@CelticsCLNS) February 17, 2022
There are also events on Saturday – the Skills Challenge, Three-Point Contest, and Dunk Contest – that you can bet on using our exclusive wagering partner BetOnline.ag. Here are the odds for all three competitions and my picks for each:
Skills Challenge – Odds to Win
Team Rookies (Barnes/Cunningham/Giddey) -155
Team Cavs (Garland/Allen/E. Mobley) +375
Team Antetokounmpo +375
“Team Rookies” is the heavy favorite here at -155, which makes sense as they are easily the most gifted team. According to NBA.com, the Skills Challenge will be under a new format, where, “three teams of three players will participate in a four-round competition that tests shooting, passing and dribbling ability.” This could certainly bode well for Barnes, Cunningham and Giddey.
The Cavaliers are the most surprise team in the NBA this season, and the “Team Cavs” members have been a major part of it. Rookie Evan Mobley has came on the scene from USC and is averaging 14.9 points and 8.1 rebounds for Cleveland. Darius Garland is a first time All-Star this season averaging 20.3 points, and Jarrett Allen is putting up 16 and 11. They have a young promising squad with a bright future.
The most exciting team in the competition though is, obviously, “Team Antetokounmpo”. The most athletic player in the NBA, the Greek Freak, and his brothers will take on the other two teams on Saturday, and they seem like a great value pick at +375. I’d also rather not bet the favorite at -155, so Team Antetokounmpo it is.
The pick: Team Antetokounmpo +375
Three-Point Challenge – Odds to Win
Fred VanVleet +400
Trae Young +425
Patty Mills +425
Luke Kennard +550
Desmond Bane +600
Zach Lavine +750
CJ McCollum +1000
Karl-Anthony Towns +1400
It’ll be hard to beat last year’s three-point contest when Steph Curry, the greatest shooter in NBA history, took the crown home in Chicago.
However – this year can come pretty close with the likes of Trae Young, CJ McCollum, Fred VanVleet, and Luke Kennard throwing up shots.
Toronto’s VanVleet is having a career year this season, specifically from behind the arc. He is second in the league in three-pointers made with 201, only trailing Steph Curry, and is averaging a career high in points per game at 21.6. He is BetOnline’s leader in the clubhouse with +400 odds to win.
I like to bet on star power in big moments, and Atlanta’s Trae Young has that. Young is averaging his highest three-point percentage of his career in 2021-22 at 38%, and known to ball when he has to. I think the NBA’s fifth highest scorer takes the trophy home.
The pick: Trae Young +425
Dunk Contest – Odds to Win
Jalen Green +140
Obi Toppin +200
Cole Anthony +350
Juan Toscano-Anderson +550
The “star power” I alluded to above in nowhere to be found in this year’s Dunk Contest. Remember when guys like Aaron Gordon, Blake Griffin, Dwight Howard and Nate Robinson would compete? Those were the days…
But, I digress. I’m sure Jalen Green, Obi Toppin, Cole Anthony, and JTA will be able to give us something to root for on Saturday night.
My pick here is Jalen Green. He’s the favorite at +140 and I think he has the athletic ability to pop off over the other guys competing. Take the Rockets rookie.
The pick: Jalen Green +140
Also, be sure to check out our new sports betting Twitter account @CLNSBetting for all the latest odds and content from CLNS Media.