The NBA All-Star Celebrity Game 2017 rosters will feature not only stars from music, television, and social media, but also some actual basketball players stepping onto the hardwood. Among them will be former guards from the NBA such as Baron Davis and Jason Williams, as well as WNBA champions Candace Parker and Lindsay Whalen. These players should provide each of the two teams with some potential playmakers, although these games usually tend to showcase the skills of basketball wannabes from the other walks of life. This year’s game takes place in New Orleans with the latest edition of the All-Star celebrity game available for TV and live stream online viewing.
In this All-Star Weekend event created for the celebrities, there will be East and West teams complete with their own coaching staffs. As reported by SB Nation, ESPN SC6 co-host Jemele Hill teams up with hip-hop star fat Joe and Toronto Raptors All-Star Kyle Lowry to coach the East team. For the West squad, it will be co-host Michael Smith from ESPN SC6 along with Golden State Warriors All-Star Draymond Green and former 106 & Park TV show host Rosci Diaz. The two coaching staffs will try to guide their respective group of assembled talents pick up the big win on Friday night.
Taking the court for the East’s celebrity roster will be a team of various personalities from different careers. Among them will be three-time WNBA champion Lindsay Whalen and retired NBA star Jason Williams. In addition, 59-year-old Brazilian basketball legend Oscar Schmidt and former D-League star Brandon Armstrong will be part of the core of actual basketball players.
The team also features Milwaukee Bucks owner Marc Lasry, actor/musician Nick Cannon of America’s Got Talent, radio personality Peter Rosenberg, actor Ansel Elgort from Divergent, musician Kris Wu, actor Caleb McLaughlin from Stranger Things, and NBA 2K personality Rachel DeMita.
Of those individuals, DeMita also has some previous experience on the court as a former NCAA women’s basketball player with Old Dominion. She now handles basketball features for NBA 2K. DeMita has said despite her love of the game, it’s been a while since she’s actually played.
considering I haven't played 5-on-5 in a year, that's unlikely.. but we shall see how it goes ???????? haha https://t.co/wKsKZhQRG5
— Rachel A DeMita (@RADeMita) February 11, 2017
Competing on the West side will be Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban (also of Shark Tank), along with hip-hop stars Master P and his son Romeo Miller. Both P and Lil’ Romeo have basketball experience to add to the team, although two-time WNBA MVP Candace Parker and former NBA All-Star Baron Davis will really head up that department.
Actor Tom Cavanaugh from The Flash, Miles Brown of Black-ish, singer/songwriter Andy Grammer, comedian Hasan Minhaj, Chinese actor Jiang Jinfu, actor Anthony Mackie from Captain America: Civil War, and chef Aaron Sanchez from Chopped will complete the West’s roster.
The annual celebrity All-Star game has been a part of NBA All-Star Weekend ever since the first game was played back in 2005. During that inaugural edition of the event, singer Brian McKnight captured the first-ever MVP award. In later years, NFL star Terrell Owens would capture back-to-back awards, but nobody has been able to outdo the man himself, comedian Kevin Hart. From 2012 through 2015 he captured four straight MVP awards.
Last year saw Arcade Fire band member Win Butler end Hart’s streak and then ESPN cut off Butler’s post-game interview as he was discussing politics a bit too much for their liking. That’s OK, as Butler will return to defend his MVP award and maybe drop another political rant.
The latest All-Star Celebrity game will be held on Friday night with ESPN televising the event live for television viewers. TV start time is scheduled for 7 p.m. Eastern Time. Viewers with ESPN as part of their cable and satellite package can also watch the game live streaming online by logging into the WatchESPN website or compatible mobile apps.
For viewers who want to see the game live online for free, SlingTV continues to offer a one week free trial for all new subscribers with ESPN as part of its basic “Sling Orange” channel package.
[Featured Image by Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images]