Who won NBA dunk contest? Who won 3-point contest? Watch highlights

The NBA All-Star skills challenge featured title defenses and a thrilling 3-point showdown between Sabrina Ionescu and Steph Curry.

Mac McClung, who plays for the Osceola Magic of the NBA G League, capped the evening by defending his slam dunk contest title. McClung defeated the Boston Celtics’ Jaylen Brown in the championship round, using Hall of Famer Shaquille O’Neal as a prop for his final dunk, which drew consensus scores of 50s from the judges.

The Milwaukee Bucks’ Damian Lillard won the 3-point contest for the second consecutive year, burying his final shot to edge the Atlanta Hawks’ Trae Young.

In her showdown against Curry, Ionescu matched the score Lillard tallied to win the 3-point contest. However, Curry followed up Ionescu’s impressive performance by scoring three more points to win the first NBA vs. WNBA 3-point challenge. — Jim Reineking

Mac McClung dunks the ball over Shaquille O'Neal during the slam dunk competition.

Mac McClung defends slam dunk contest title

Mac McClung, who has been a slam dunk viral sensation for nearly a decade starting in high school, etched his name in NBA All-Star Weekend history book with his second consecutive slam dunk contest title.

McClung, a G League player for the Osceola Magic with just four career NBA games played, jumped over TNT analyst, Basketball of Hall of Famer and 7-footer Shaquille O’Neal, who was wearing a jersey from McClung’s high school, Gate City in southwest Virginia, for a two-handed reverse dunk.

McClung received a perfect score of 50 from judges Gary Payton, Fred Jones, Mitch Richmond, Darnell Hillman, Dominque Wilkins and slipped by Boston’s Jaylen Brown for the championship.

“I’m trying to sit with it right now and take a second and understand what’s going on,” McClung said. “I feel like life is so fast sometimes, it’s just I’ll look back in 20 years when I can’t jump anymore and not as quick. But I know I’m a lucky dude.

“Shaq is so cool to put on my high school jersey. Makes me emotional that he did that.When he put it on, he said, You better not miss a dunk. And I was like, All right, I won’t miss it.”

Miami’s Jaime Jaquez Jr. and New York Knicks/Westchester Knicks forward Jacob Toppin were eliminated in the first round.

McClung needed a strong final dunk after Brown put on an oversize white glove on his left hand, jumped over Donovan Mitchell and dunk with his left.

“I think ultimately in this media era, some players are afraid to make it into a meme or anything like that,” Brown said. “Like I wanted to come out and have fun with it, and that’s what I did.”

In their first dunks of the final round, McClung jumped over two people for a one-handed dunk, and Brown did a 360 windmill dunk wearing a No. 5 Brewster jersey, honoring his friend Terrence Clarke who died in car accident in 2021 two months before the NBA draft.

McClung also had an impressive dunk in the first round: he grabbed ball off top of person’s head while jumping over the person, let go of the basketball and caught it before completing a reverse dunk.

McClung won $105,000, which is almost more than he will make in the G-League this season. — Jeff Zillgitt 

Jaylen Brown honors the late Terrence Clarke in dunk contest

Before his third dunk of the night, Jaylen Brown put on Terrence Clarke’s high school jersey — a No. 5 from New Hampshire’s Brewster Academy. After slamming down the ball, Brown pointed to Clarke on his back. 

Clarke, a Boston Native, played basketball at Kentucky for one season, where he averaged 9.6 points, 2.6 rebounds and two assists in eight games. He declared for the 2021 NBA draft, but Clarke tragically died in a car accident on April 22 in Los Angeles months before the draft. He was 19.

The NBA honored Clarke at the draft and he was posthumously drafted in the first round. — Cydney Henderson

Steph Curry wins 3-point contest vs Sabrina Ionescu

Sabrina Ionescu and Steph Curry are settling this once and for all — Who is the better three-point shooter?

Curry has a 42.7% three-point percentage throughout his 15-year career, while Ionescu has shot 37.3% from three during her four-year career. 

Both came out very humble. Ionescu said she wanted to “do the best I can” and hopefully “can make more than I miss,” while Curry said he only wants to “have a great time and put on a show.”

They put on a show indeed. 

Ionescu went first and put up a score of 26 after her first round. Curry followed with 29 points to win. He shared a friendly hug with Ionescu before being presented with the championship belt. 

Ionescu is the reigning WNBA All-Star 3-point champion after she was nearly perfect, knocking down 25 of 27 three-point shots during her final run to set an all-time record for either the NBA or WNBA.

Curry has a couple 3-point contest wins under his belt, hoisting the trophy in 2021 and 2015. (In fact, Curry is the only player to win the skills challenge, 3-point contest and All-Star Game MVP in their career.)  

He added another title to his resume on Saturday.

Following the inaugural competition, Ionescu called Curry the “greatest to ever do it.” Curry was equally complimentary and said Ionescu “set the bar and was unbelievable to watch.”

Round two? Curry hinted at running it back next year: “This might be something. I don’t know if anyone can fill these shoes, but it might be something we do more often.” — Cydney Henderson

Sabrina Ionescu shooting from NBA 3-point line vs. Steph Curry

Sabrina Ionescu and Steph Curry will be shooting from the same depth. 

Sabrina Ionescu had the option of shooting from either the WNBA three-point line (22 feet and 1.75 inches) or NBA three-point line (23 feet and nine inches), but opted for the NBA arc. However, she will still use a WNBA ball. 

“So much credit to them,” NBA commissioner Adam Silver said. “I wish I could say that the league in its lab came up with this idea. This was about Steph and Sabrina, two friends who said, ‘Won’t this be fantastic?’ I know that Steph cares a lot about the women’s game, the opportunity to bring more attention to this fantastic shooting.” — Cydney Henderson

Damian Lillard defends his 3-point title

Once again, it was Dame Time in NBA All-Star 3-point contest.

One of the clutch players in the game, Milwaukee Bucks guard Damian Lillard needed to make the final shot of the event to edge Atlanta’s Trae Young and win his second consecutive 3-point contest.

Lillard had 26 points in the final round, slipping past Young’s 24 points.

“When I got to the final rack, I didn’t know my exact score, but when I missed a couple, I heard the crowd just oohing and aahing. Once they kept doing it over and over, I knew I was still alive because I knew they would have stopped if it had been over for me,” Lillard said. “The next two balls, I missed again, and then I grabbed the next one and I knew I needed that to win.”

He is the first player to repeat since Toronto’s Jason Kapono in 2007 and 2008.

In the final round, Lillard made 16 of 27 3-point shots, including the final money-ball shot (worth two points) on each rack and hit one of the two deep-range shots (worth three points).

Lillard said going last in each round helped him. “it’s an advantage because you can see a target, know what you’ve got to get to. You’re not shooting just aimlessly where someone can come behind me and beat this score. You either have a chance to beat it or you’re going to fall short.

“That’s the only advantage that it is, is just knowing. You can still go out there and miss. I like that advantage because I can see it. As a shooter, you have to tighten up and be sharp and try to hunt somebody down if it comes down to it. So I think it helped me for sure.”

Lillard is 15th in 3-pointers made this season with 148.

In the first round, Lillard, Young, Indiana’s Tyrese Haliburton and Minnesota’s Karl-Anthony Towns had a four-way tie with 26 points and went to a tiebreaker: 30 seconds to make as many shots as possible, and Haliburton was eliminated with a  score of 12 while Lillard and Towns posted 16 points and Young had 15 to reach the final round. Towns, the 2022 3-point winner, had 22 points in the final round.

Lillard earned $60,000 for the win, Young picked up $40,000, Towns $25,000 and Haliburton $15,000. — Jeff Zillgitt  

Tyrese Haliburton, Benedict Mathurin and Myles Turner lead Team Pacers to skills challenge win

Is there a such thing as home-court advantage? It appears so. For the third consecutive time, the home team has won the NBA All-Star skills challenge. Team Pacers, composed of Tyrese Haliburton, Bennedict Mathurin and Myles Turner, took home the trophy in front of the crowd at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis on Saturday evening. 

Team Pacers got on the board first with 100 challenge points for winning the first round, which consisted of a 35-foot outlet pass, pylon dribbles, a short shot in the lane, corner three over an automated windmill defender, and a made basket on the opposite end. Haliburton capped his team’s impressive run with an off-the-backboard dunk. 

The second round consisted of a passing challenge, where each team had 30-seconds to collect as many points as possible by scoring in moving targets. Team All-Stars and Team Pacers tied with 74-points, resulting in a tiebreaker, which Team Pacers ultimately won by scoring 92 to the All-Stars’ 90 points. With the second-round win, Team Pacers took a 200 point lead over Team First Picks and Team All-Stars, who both had zero points.

Team All-Star evened things up with Team Pacers by winning the shooting challenge, where each team had 60-seconds to make as many shots from certain locations on the floor, including a five-point shot from half-court and a four-pointer beyond the arc.  

Team All-Star and Team Pacers both had 200 points, while Team First Pick had zero. 

The skills challenge went to a sudden death, half-court shootout. It took Team All-Stars 58.8 seconds to hit a half-court shot. Team Pacers, however, were able to knock the shot down in only 30.3 seconds. — Cydney Henderson

Adam Silver defends eligibility rule for MVP, All-NBA honors

NBA commissioner Adam Silver defended the new 65-game rule to become eligible for major regular-season awards such as MVP and All-NBA. Though Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid is ineligible for a second consecutive MVP and All-NBA because he won’t play in 65 games, and Indiana Pacers guard Tyrese Haliburton can’t afford to miss more than six games the rest of the season not only for All-NBA consideration but the possibility of an extra $41 million in his five-year supermax contract.

“As you know, a lot of thought went into the 65-game demarcation,” Silver said. “Not only was it collectively bargained with the players, but we spent extensive time leading up to collective bargaining talking to all the various constituencies in the league, most importantly the coaches or general managers, individual players directly, and as was built into your question, the notion was we needed to further incentivize players, particularly star players, to play more games.

“So I’m not ready to say that it isn’t working so far. I can tell you that the number of games that players have participated in is up this season, and interestingly enough, injuries are actually down. Whether that’s meaningful data yet, I don’t know.” — Jeff Zillgitt  

When is the NBA 3-point contest?

The 3-point contest is Saturday at the Indianapolis Colts’ Lucas Oil Stadium in downtown Indianapolis. The event will take place after the skills challenge and before the Steph Curry vs. Sabrina Ionescu 3-point shootout and the dunk contest. 

What time does the dunk contest start? 

The dunk contest is the last event on Saturday night. 

NBA dunk contest, 3-point contest stream: How to watch 

TNT, ESPN, ESPN 2 and NBA TV and the NBA will provide coverage of the weekend’s events and news conferences. 

NBA All-Star weekend schedule 

Here’s the schedule for the rest of the weekend: 

Saturday, Feb. 17 

  • All-Star Saturday Night Skills Challenge, 3-point Contest, Steph vs. Sabrina 3-point Challenge, Slam Dunk Content, 8 p.m. ET, TNT 

Sunday, Feb. 18 

  • G League Up Next Game, 1:30 p.m. ET, NBA TV 
  • NBA All-Star Game, 8 p.m. ET, TNT 

News from NBA commissioner Adam Silver’s All-Star Weekend press conference

A few items of note from Adam’s Silver’s NBA All-Star Weekend press conference:

∎ Silver acknowledged he is focused on improving player-referee relations.

“I’m so sympathetic to both players who feel that an official missed a call, and sometimes they do, and I’m incredibly sympathetic to officials who have some of the hardest jobs in sports and are under a microscope and occasionally, of course, do miss calls, and we acknowledge when they do,” Silver said. “What makes me most frustrated are the communication issues sort of between players and officials. I feel that’s an area we should be able to do a better job, both ways. … It’s an area where we can make progress.”

∎ With NIL deals changing the college sports landscape, Silver said he will re-evaluate the G League Ignite, which the NBA has used to develop teens who did not want to play in college and sought a payday but were draft-age eligible.

“We are in the process of reassessing Team Ignite because now some of those same players who didn’t want to be one-and-done players because they felt it was unfair and they wanted the ability not just to earn a living playing basketball but to do commercial deals that weren’t available to them at college, to hire professional agents, an opportunity that wasn’t available to them at college, they now – all of those same opportunities have become available to them,” Silver said.

“I’m not sure what the future of Team Ignite will be, because before there was a hole in the marketplace that we thought we were filling before doing that, and now my focus is turning to earlier development of those players.”

∎ Silver praised former Dallas Mavericks majority owner Mark Cuban who sold his majority share to the families of Dr. Miriam Adelson and Sivan and Patrick Dumont.

“He’s truly been a game-changing owner in this league, and he’s had great success, obviously, with a championship but also competitive teams most of the time during his tenure. And he’s been a very active participant in league matters, whether it’s been our media committee or Board of Governors meetings. He’s never hesitated to speak his mind.

“I’m pleased that he’s still – he’s not the controlling governor of the team anymore – a very significant investor in the Dallas Mavericks as he’s made clear he’s not going anywhere. If you just tune into a game, he still seems to be standing in the same spot he was when he was the governor, and he continues to text, email, call us at the league office when he has something he wants to share with us.” — Jeff Zillgitt  

Is Victor Wembanyama an All-Star?

Victor Wembanyama — the San Antonio Spurs rookie and No. 1 overall pick in the 2023 NBA draft — is not a Western Conference All-Star.

However, Wembanyama did take part in the rising stars competition on Friday night.

Wembanyama finished the second semifinal game with a team-high 11 points, seven rebounds and two blocks, though his team was defeated and did not reach the final. — Jim Reineking

This year’s NBA All-Star Weekend marks the debut of the LED court.

The court, developed by the German company ASB GlassFloor, included design and color changes, location-based player tracking animations, and countdowns for extra point periods.

It’s the first time a fully LED court’s been used for an NBA event. — Ayrton Ostly

Dunk contest participants 

These four players are taking part:  

  • Mac McClung, G League’s Osceola Magic (2023 dunk contest winner) 
  • Jacob Toppin, New York Knicks, G League’s Westchester Knicks 
  • Jaylen Brown, Boston Celtics 
  • Jaime Jaquez Jr., Miami Heat 

Read Jeff Zillgitt’s full feature on McClung here. 

NBA 3-point contest 2024 participants 

These are players are taking part: 

  • Damian Lillard, Milwaukee Bucks (2023 3-point contest winner)
  • Malik Beasley, Milwaukee Bucks 
  • Tyrese Haliburton, Indiana Pacers 
  • Jalen Brunson, New York Knicks 
  • Karl-Anthony Towns, Minnesota Timberwolves 
  • Trae Young, Atlanta Hawks 
  • Donovan Mitchell, Cleveland Cavaliers 
  • Lauri Markkanen, Utah Jazz 

3-point contest winners 

Here are the winners for the last 10 years. Find the complete list here. 

  • 2023: Damian Lillard (Trail Blazers) 
  • 2022: Karl-Anthony Towns (Timberwolves) 
  • 2021: Steph Curry (Warriors) 
  • 2020: Buddy Hield (Kings) 
  • 2019: Joe Harris (Nets) 
  • 2018: Devin Booker (Suns) 
  • 2017: Eric Gordon (Rockets) 
  • 2016: Klay Thompson (Warriors) 
  • 2015: Stephen Curry (Warriors) 
  • 2014: Marco Belinelli (Spurs) 

Who has won the most 3-point contests? 

The Boston Celtics’ Larry Bird and Chicago Bulls’ Craig Hodges have each won the event three times. — Jeff Zillgitt 

What is the record for most points in an NBA 3-point contest round? 

Golden State’s Steph Curry and Indiana’s Tyrese Haliburton share the record with 31 points out of a possible 40. — Jeff Zillgitt  

What are the NBA 3-point contest rules? 

Ball racks are stationed at five locations around the 3-point line, and four of the racks contain four orange basketballs and one money ball. The orange basketballs are worth one point, and the money ball, which has to be the last ball shot on each rack, is worth two points. The fifth rack will be an all money-ball rack and each competitor gets to choose where this rack will be among the locations. Each money ball on this rack is worth two points. Two pedestals are placed deeper than the 3-point line, edging closer to the center court logo, and each pedestal holds a white basketball. A made shot from deep range is worth 3 points. Each contestant has 70 seconds to shoot as many of the 27 basketballs as he can. — Jeff Zillgitt   

Dunk contest winners 

Here are the winners for the last 10 years. Find the complete list here. 

  • 2023: Mac McClung (76ers) 
  • 2022: Obi Toppin (Knicks) 
  • 2021: Anfernee Simons (Trail Blazers) 
  • 2020: Derrick Jones Jr. (Heat)  
  • 2019: Hamidou Diallo (Thunder) 
  • 2018: Donovan Mitchell (Jazz) 
  • 2017: Glenn Robinson III (Pacers) 
  • 2016: Zach LaVine (Timberwolves) 
  • 2015: Zach LaVine (Timberwolves) 
  • 2014: John Wall (Wizards) 

Steph vs. Sabrina 3-point contest

Golden State Warriors guard Steph Curry and New York Liberty guard Sabrina Ionescu will compete head-to-head in the first NBA vs. WNBA 3-point challenge. This event will take place after the traditional 3-point contest and before the slam dunk contest. 

Curry will shoot from the NBA 3-point line and use NBA basketballs, and Ionescu has the option to shoot from the WNBA 3-point line but she said she plans to shoot from the NBA line. She will use WNBA basketballs. Each made shot will result in a donation from State Farm to the NBA Foundation to support economic empowerment in the Black community.

Read Jeff Zillgitt’s story on how this contest came together. 

Sabrina vs. Steph 3-point contest rules 

The format for the Sabrina vs. Steph 3-point contest is the same as a traditional NBA and WNBA 3-point contest: 

∎ 70 seconds to shoot as many of the 27 basketballs as he/she can. 

∎ Four ball racks with four game balls and one “money” ball. 

∎ Fifth rack will be a special “all money ball” rack. He/she can decide the spot for this rack. 

∎ Two deep range shots. 

∎ Game balls worth 1 point, money balls worth 2 points and deep range balls worth 3 points. 

Will Sabrina Ionescu shoot from the NBA or WNBA 3-point line? 

Sabrina Ionescu told reporters this week that she plans to shoot from the NBA 3-point line. 

“I shoot from that range to begin with,” she said. “I practice from that range and wanting to just be a better shooter, a better basketball player and get better as a whole. And so knowing that I had the opportunity to pick what line I wanted to shoot from, it was a no-brainer from when it was first presented that I wanted to shoot from the NBA line and continue to just prove that we’re capable and we’re willing. 

“It’s not something that it took a lot of convincing and knowing that I wanted to continue to just equal the playing field and do so when it matters and on the biggest stage.” 

She can change her mind and shoot from the WNBA 3-point line though it seems unlikely. — Jeff Zillgitt 

Mac McClung’s life took off, skyrocketing into the NBA stratosphere on a February night in Salt Lake City when he won the 2023 NBA All-Star Slam Dunk Contest as a G League player one year ago. 

Fame appeared. Exposure increased. Endorsement opportunities arrived. 

He ended the season playing two games with the Philadelphia 76ers, scoring 20 points, grabbing nine rebounds and collecting nine assists in the Sixers’ season-ending victory against Brooklyn. 

What didn’t show up was a guaranteed contract with an NBA team. 

“That’s the biggest battle I fought this summer,” McClung told USA TODAY Sports. “So many people around me were like, ‘Man, you deserve this. What’s going on? What’s wrong? Why didn’t you get this?’ There were so many questions. 

“And truly, I felt the same way. I felt like I deserved to get a contract somewhere with the way I played last year.” Read Jeff Zillgitt’s full feature on McClung here. 

NBA dunk contest judges 

Here are the judges for Saturday’s slam dunk contest: Two-time dunk contest winner Dominique Wilkins, 2004 dunk contest winner Fred Jones, Hall of Famers Gary Payton and Mitch Richmond, and Darnell Hillman.

NBA dunk contest prize money 

Here is how the prize money is distributed: 

  • First place: $105,000 
  • Second place: $55,000 
  • Third place: $20,000 
  • Fourth place: $20,000 

NBA 3-point contest prize money 

Here is how the prize money is distributed: 

  • First place: $60,000 
  • Second place: $40,000 
  • Third place: $25,000 
  • Fourth place: $15,000 
  • Fifth place: $15,000 
  • Sixth place: $15,000 
  • Seventh place: $15,000 
  • Eighth place: $10,000 

NBA dunk contest odds 

The highest number of tickets at BetMGM are on Celtics guard Jaylen Brown (+525) to win the dunk contest. Mac McClung (-225) is the favorite. — Richard Morin 

NBA 3-point contest odds 

The field is wide open for the 3-point contest, according to BetMGM. The most money is on Pacers star Tyrese Haliburton (+500), who owns 26.7% of the handle. — Richard Morin  

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