You know what? This year's All-Star Weekend was actually pretty good. The main reason is that the Pacers were well represented, with Paul George leading the East dunkers to a sweep in the new-format Dunk Contest, George and Roy Hibbert playing and Frank Vogel coaching the East All-Stars to a record-breaking come-from-behind 163-155 victory over the West. Assistant coach Nate McMillian also coached Team Hill to a 142-136 victory over Team Webber in the Rising Stars Challenge. That's four Pacers at All-Star Weekend this year, FIVE if you include TNT announcer and the greatest Pacer of all-time, Reggie Miller!
So here's a point form summary of the Pacers' weekend:
– Nate McMillan coaches Team Hill to a 142-136 win over Team Webber in the Rising Stars Challenge; Andre Drummond wins MVP with 30 points and 25 rebounds.
– Reggie Miller calls Kenny Smith an "idiot" for picking Marco Belinelli as a dark horse to win the 3-point contest after the Spur throws up a couple of airballs in the first few racks, but is then forced to eat his words after Belinelli posts a contest-high 24 in the tie-breaker to beat Bradley Beal and take home the trophy.
– Paul George leads the Eastern Conference dunkers to a sweep against the Western Conference. George, John Wall and last year's winner Terrence Ross first won the "freestyle" round where they threw down some impressive individual and team slams, with the last one being a vicious PG throwdown off a John Wall pass off the shot clock. Then Ross, George and Wall then beat Damiam Lillard, Harrison Barnes and Ben McLemore, respectively, in the "battle" round. George had a 360-reverse-through-the-legs dunk that could have won him "Dunker of the Night" had he completed it on the first try, but it took him 3.5 goes to get it right, and the final attempt didn't have quite the same level of authority as the earlier attempts. Instead, Wall took home the honors by jumping over Wizards mascot G-man, grabbing the ball from the top of G-man's head, pumping the ball, and throwing down a ridiculous insane reverse.
– Frank Vogel looks really uncomfortable when being introduced on stage alongside Nelly.
– Paul George scores a quiet 18 points along with 5 rebounds and 5 assists in the All-Star Game. Defining moment of the game for him was hitting all three free throws after being fouled by James Harden on a three-pointer. The East overtook the West with those baskets and never trailed again after that.
– Roy Hibbert's game is not suited for the All-Star game but Vogel slowed it down enough for the big fella to get some touches inside. Hibbert finished with 8 points, 5 rebounds and 2 assists in 12 minutes of action.
– Andrew Bynum stays in Indy to get treatment as he looks to prepare his body for the second half of the season.
– The remainder of the Pacers get a well-earned rest and will be ready when the team takes on Atlanta at home on Tuesday.