Former Celtics Star Offers Quick Fix to NBA All-Star Game: ‘Nothing But a Layup Drill’

NBA All-Star Game

Getty Former Boston Celtics star Cedric Maxwell had a few things to say about today's version of the NBA All-Star Game.

Like many, Cedric Maxwell was bored with the 2024 NBA All-Star Game. Defense was non-existent, as was the competitive spirit. The former Boston Celtics star couldn’t get himself to watch the game.

Nearly 400 points were scored as the East defeated the West 211-186. Karl-Anthony Towns of the Minnesota Timberwolves came off the bench to score 50 points. Damian Lillard of the Milwaukee Bucks was named MVP after his 39-point effort. Still, nobody cared. Maxwell referred to the game as a “layup drill” and offered his suggestion on how to spice things up a bit.

Cedric Maxwell Says To Get WNBA Players Involved

Maxwell didn’t have a whole lot of good to say about the NBA All-Star Weekend. He did, however, like the idea of Golden State Warriors star Stephen Curry taking on Sabrina Ionescu of the WNBA’s New York Liberty in a 3-point contest.

“That is something that the NBA can build off of,” Maxwell said recently on “The Cedric Maxwell Podcast.” “When you think about the NBA All-Star Game and what happened Sunday, it wasn’t nothing but a layup drill. It was a layup drill.

“I’d have been more afraid of somebody getting hurt going through the motions. That’s essentially what everybody did.”

Maxwell said there is little incentive to fire these players up. He said the money they make for participating isn’t enough motivation. Maxwell said the NBA should allow members of the WNBA to participate in the NBA All-Star Game to spice things up and add some competitive spirit.

“The only thing I can think of that you can do on Sunday, which might be a cool thing to do, is if you have a mixed game,” he said. “WNBA players playing in the All-Star Game with the big boys.

“That gives you another avenue that these girls are going to play hard. The guys aren’t going to want to be embarrassed. Some guys are going to be playing harder than most because some of these women are going to get out there, and they’re going to try to kill it. That might make the competitive juices of the guys flow that much more.”

Maxwell Not Impressed With Towns’ 50-Point Outing

While bringing in WNBA players isn’t a guarantee that the NBA All-Star Game will generate more competition, Maxwell is right on about the lack of enthusiasm for the All-Star event. He was far from impressed by the 50-point performance by Towns.

“Let me just say it bluntly: I could’ve gotten 53 doing layups,” Maxwell said. “I wouldn’t have been dunking, but I could’ve gotten 53 running up and down doing layups. I could’ve done that all day. A lot of people could have done that.

“The skillset wasn’t there. The fun things — Dame shooting from halfcourt — that was pretty good.”

Max’s take was the same for many. Former Boston Globe sportswriter and Celtics reporter Bob Ryan echoed Maxwell’s statement. Ryan covered plenty of NBA All-Star Games during his career and said today’s event is a joke.

“The NBA is guilty of fraudulent advertising, of consumer fraud,” Ryan said on the “Bob Ryan & Jeff Goodman Podcast.” “They have pitched this as a basketball game. It’s not a basketball game.”

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