by Daniel Olsen
The All-Star weekend came and went at State Farm Arena in Atlanta. With the best record in the NBA, the Utah Jazz finally got the representation they deserved. Who had the best showing of the weekend for the Beehive State? It’s time to break down every aspect of this celebratory exhibition matchup. For every category, each person will receive a score out of 10.
The Jazz have been off to a historic level when it comes to shooting from long range. With Devin Booker sidelined, two Jazz players were given the chance to showcase their talents from deep. Mike Conley and Donovan Mitchell were two of the six contestants in the competition.
In the first round, Mitchell tied Zach Lavine for fourth place with 22 points. This disqualified him from advancing to the next round. However, Conley advanced to the final round. With 26 points in the first round, he had the best performance of anyone besides Steph Curry. Curry had 31 points to advance to the final round.
In the final round, Conley was the second of three contestants. With 27 points, he was in sole possession of first place as Tatum struggled with just 17 in the final round. It was all up to Curry to go for his second ever three point contest trophy. Mitchell and Conley held their breath as Curry shot the last money ball (worth two points). At the time, he had 26 points and needed just the last shot to win the contest.
Curry splashed the last shot to take the title as Conley and Mitchell laughed off the loss. While the Jazz players shot well, nobody could match the prolific shooting talent of Curry.
Rudy and Quin: Not applicable
The actual game was full of high flying dunks and long range shots. Mitchell finished with the most points of any Jazz player with 15 on the game. That was the fifth most points scored by a player on Team Durant. Since Durant did not participate on his own drafted team, Mitchell will be the captain of choice for Jazz fans in this game.
Mitchell’s best highlight of the night was a one-handed catch for an alley-oop dunk. He also converted on three of nine shots from downtown. There is not much more that could be asked of Mitchell in his 28 minutes of play.
Gobert also had an impressive night with 10 points; 7 of those points were in just 13 minutes of play. He got some impressive alley-oops of his own. He scored as much as captain LeBron and starting center Jokic did combined.
The head coach of Team LeBron was none other than Utah Jazz coach Quin Snyder. He mostly let the players do their thing but some of his coaching certainly came into play in the 20 point win. It was the largest margin of victory since the 2016 NBA All-Star game. His team made 31 threes which is the most since 2019 when Team LeBron made 35 from downtown. Quin is arguably the most successful Jazz person in a winning effort over the weekend.
Conley did not have his best game as his hot shooting from downtown in the three-point contest suddenly went ice cold in the game. He missed his first five attempts from deep before finally connecting on a three in the third quarter. It was a tremendous achievement just to finally be selected as an All-Star. However, it is fair to say that a C is a fair grade for Conley’s performance at least as it pertained to the All-Star game. He was capable of scoring more if a few more of his three-pointers had gone in.
Mitchell takes the cake here as far as the shoe selection goes. He wore a Pride-themed version of his signature shoe. It was white with a colorful rainbow sole. Conley had the most stylish outfit of the night in his first All-Star appearance. Snyder was looking the most professional in his suit and tie. Gobert looked good but didn’t really need to show off with his shoes or outfit as he is always sharp no matter what.
Jazz Winner of All-Star Weekend
Of the Jazz players and Coach Snyder, Mitchell and Conley both tied for the night. Mitchell got the edge in the actual game but Conley’s stellar shooting in the three-point contest made it an equally successful night for both players.
Featured image via Brynn Anderson | AP