The NBA All-Star 2020 Game was bound to be phenomenal. There were 10 first-time All-Stars, LeBron James and Giannis Antetokounmpo served as captains for the second straight season, and it was in Chicago for the first time in 32 years.
NBA All-Star 2020: The new format works!
New changes to the format of a game constantly wrought with questionable defense and effort would ensure a unique experience. These changes were made in honor of the late Kobe Bryant.
The 2020 NBA All-Star Game featured the Elam Ending for the first time Sunday in Chicago, which leaves the fourth quarter untimed and hinging on a target score.
The new format featured a revamped fourth quarter in which the teams play to a final target score, first introduced in The Basketball Tournament as the Elam Ending. The final target score was determined by taking the leading team’s total cumulative score through three quarters and adding 24 points — the 24 representing Bryant’s jersey number. The first team to reach the final target score during the untimed fourth-quarter wins the game.
That mark was 157, and the NBA explained that number came by taking Team Giannis‘ 133 points after three quarters and adding 24 to honor the late Kobe Bryant’s retired Los Angeles Lakers jersey number.
Chris Paul pitched some form of the idea to NBA commissioner Adam Silver and both went to work on making it happen. He is the President of the NBA Players Association.
“I didn’t know what to expect because it was a new format,” LeBron James said. “None of us knew what to expect. But throughout the whole fourth quarter and at the end of the game, everybody was like, ‘That was pretty damn fun.’ … That was extremely fun and a great way to end 2020 NBA All-Star Weekend.”
Stephen A. of ESPN tweeted about how the 4th quarter was everything that the fans craved.
This 4th QT of @NBA All-Star Game is an absolutely phenomenal look for the game of basketball. For these guys to be going at it like this — in an exhibition game —….you can’t ask for more than this. This is what fans crave and these players delivered.#ProudOfThemAll
— Stephen A Smith (@stephenasmith) February 17, 2020
Support for the new format
Others came out in the new format’s support as well, especially how the fourth quarter ended.
Well… the Elam ending worked!
— Spencer Dinwiddie (@SDinwiddie_25) February 17, 2020
BEST ALL STAR GAME EVER!!!!! Fun weekend but can’t wait to go on this championship run #3 pic.twitter.com/apnXRq5unH
— Joel Embiid (@JoelEmbiid) February 17, 2020
Wow love this new format I was definitely skeptical leading up but this is mad entertaining props to the league and especially the players ✊🏾#NBAAllStarGame
— Myles Turner (@Original_Turner) February 17, 2020
— ESPN (@espn) February 17, 2020