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All Star Weekend Picks

Just like everyone else on the planet, I enjoy the NBA All Star Game's dunk contest more than the three point contest, which I like more than the skills competition, and no one has any idea how the HORSE competition will shake out. Of course, each of these is much much more fun if you have a rooting interest, so in case you and your friends decide to create a little competition of your own, I'm here to help you out. We'll get to the game itself tomorrow.



The Favorite -- Dwight Howard -- He's shown that he can put on a show, which is what really matters in this thing. Everyone's athletic. Everyone's got ups. What separates the jaw-dropping from the winning is that putting on a Superman costume is easier to comprehend and more of a visual feat than dunking while only wearing socks.

Next Up -- JR Smith -- Don't forget that the man is absolutely insane and could attempt anything up to and including a somersault dunk. Remember, it's about the show, and an insane, impulsive, person might be willing to do things no one else would dream up.

The Dark Horse -- Rudy Fernandez -- I wouldn't be shocked if he and Pau have a 360 alley oop planned.

The Long Shot -- Nate Robinson -- Dunking from 5-9 means his feet are farthest off the ground. Unfortunately, he's also got the lowest vertical reach of anyone in this thing.



If you pick anyone other than Jason Kapono, then you just got lucky with your pick. There's no reason to pick anyone else. As my buddy, Eric, put it last year, Kapono's at the All Star Game for one reason, and one reason only: to win.



Mo Williams and Tony Parker have too much veteran savvy to break a sweat for something like this. Derrick Rose would be the clear choice to win, except he can't hit the fifteen foot jumper. Therefore, it's gonna be Devin Harris's game to win.



It's kind of funny that three austere guys are going to play HORSE on the biggest stage the game's ever gotten. I'm not really sure who's got the creativity to pull off something truly memorable--Mayo might be that guy, if his recruitment to USC is any indication--but winning HORSE doesn't really require creativity; it requires a nick here and a cut there, maybe a little bit of mind games until the opponent loses all his confidence. Sounds most like Joe Johnson's game to me.