NBA All-Star Saturday night will not take place today with the slam dunk contest along with the three-point shootout instead scheduled for Sunday, March 7 on TNT. This year’s NBA All-Star Weekend will look a lot different with all of the events taking place on the same night.
Normally, the skills challenge, slam dunk contest and three-point shootout take place on the eve of the All-Star game. This year, the NBA opted to squeeze all the events into Sunday as a result of COVID-19. There will not be any fans in the stands for any of the events. LeBron James and Kevin Durant are this year’s captains and the two NBA stars selected the team rosters for Sunday’s game.
The NBA All-Star festivities tip-off on TNT at 5 p.m. Eastern on Sunday, March 7, but the actual contests start at 6:30 p.m. with the skills challenge followed by the three-point shootout. The slam dunk contest will take place during halftime of the All-Star game which tips off at 8 p.m. Eastern.
Adam Silver on 2021 NBA All-Star Weekend: ‘It Won’t Change the Experience for the Largest Portion of Our Fans’
There was a debate as to whether there would be an All-Star Weekend this year, but commissioner Adam Silver advocated for the events to go on as planned, albeit in a much-revised format. Silver described the NBA support as “99 percent virtual” noting that the lack of fan activities should not impact the success of the weekend.
“For a league that doesn’t have a neutral-site championship series historically, the focus typically is having an opportunity during our season to bring the entire community together,” Silver said, per NBA.com. “Of course, we don’t have the opportunity to do that in person this year. But the NBA community is 99% virtual. It’s a global community on social media, representing close to 1.9 billion people who are engaged with us. There fact that there won’t be the traditional receptions and parties and fan events — and we’ll sadly miss them — it won’t change the experience for the largest portion of our fans.”
LeBron James on NBA All-Star Game: ‘I Have Zero Energy & Zero Excitement’
James is one of several NBA stars that voiced their displeasure for the league planning to follow through with the events despite the ongoing pandemic. The Lakers star explained that he had “zero energy and zero excitement” about having the All-Star game this year.
“I have zero energy and zero excitement about an All-Star Game this year,” James noted, via Sports Illustrated. “I don’t even understand why we’re having an All-Star Game.”
James will play in the event and stopped short of threatening to pull out of the weekend. The contests and game will take place at an empty State Farm Arena in Atlanta. James admitted he plans to be there “physically, not mentally.”
“We’re also still dealing with a pandemic,” James explained. “We’re still dealing with everything that’s been going on, and we’re going to bring the whole league into one city that’s open? Obviously, the pandemic has absolutely nothing to do with it at this point when it comes to that weekend.”
Here is a look at the NBA All-Star Weekend schedule for Sunday, March 7.
NBA All-Star Schedule 2021: Slam Dunk, 3-Point Contest & Skills Challenge
|DATE||EVENT||TIME (ET)/TV CHANNEL|
|Sunday, March 7, 2021||Skills Challenge||6:30 p.m. TNT|
|Sunday, March 7, 2021||3-Point Contest||Following Skills Challenge|
|Sunday, March 7, 2021||NBA All-Star Game||8 p.m. TNT|
|Sunday, March 7, 2021||NBA Slam Dunk Contest||Halftime of ASG|
3-Point Contest Participants 2021
|Mike Conley (Replaces Devin Booker)|
Slam Dunk Contest Participants 2021