The Three-Point Shootout might be just as exciting as the Slam Dunk Contest nowadays, as there are few things better in the NBA than watching a sharpshooter warm it up from long range. This could be quite the show on Saturday night in New Orleans.
When it comes to that, there may be no one more thrilling in the league than Golden State’s Stephen Curry (5/2), who leads the league in three-point attempts and shoots over 40% from beyond the arc. He has been installed as the NBA betting favorite ahead of the last two winners of the Shootout, Minnesota’s Kevin Love (3/1) and Cleveland’s Kyrie Irving (11/2), and the spotlight will definitely be on the latter, who has struggled mightily but was still voted into the All-Star Game as a starter. A win on Saturday might quiet a few critics, but not for very long.
Portland’s Damian Lillard (11/2) and San Antonio’s Marco Belinelli (11/2) are next up, and out of everyone competing in this contest, Belinelli leads the way in three-point completion percentage, hitting 44.6% of his attempts. Orlando’s Aaron Afflalo (7/1) is behind Belinelli and is one of the few bright spots on a terrible Magic team. And don’t forget about Brooklyn’s Joe Johnson (8/1), who was probably the most scrutinized All-Star pick on either team, but quietly, he is hitting 39.3% of his three-point attempts and has been playing much better on a team where everyone struggled badly early in the season. Like Irving, Johnson might come out with something to prove on Saturday night, although they both might be better served to save some of that for the big game on Sunday night. Washington’s Bradley Beal (13/2) rounds out the field, and he is actually shooting better from three-point land (42.1%) than he is overall (40.9%).