Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Belatedly... the NBA All-Star Game.

It may have been exciting inside all the flapping uniforms. Who knows?

A TIME TO LAUGH. You know how carried away we were with the Olympics. It's our only excuse. How else could we have completely forgotten to cover the February 19 event that assembled America's "royalty" in Houston, Texas:

The streets of Houston were hot, despite the chilly 40-degree weather. But it was the star-studded parties and events where things really sizzled. Without even mentioning the NBA all-time royalty visiting the city prior to Feb. 19 game... celebrity sightings were in full passion...

In addition to an A-list that included Diddy, Jadakiss and Fat Joe, there was an auction that featured [Michael] Jordan's autograph on Air Jordan shoes I though XXI (complete with a custom display), which was stopped at $425,000 by night's end so that the bidding could continue on eBay through March 3...

Not to be outdone, Puma on Feb. 18 rolled out Ludacris–star of its new ad campaign, and former longtime endorser Walt "Clyde" Frazier, back in the fold to tout Puma Clydes—with marketing due this summer. That same day, EA Sports hosted a private tout the "NBA Europe Tour Presented by EA Sports"...
Among the most visible non-NBA athletes in town was NFL running back Terrell Owens, who hosted a night-into-day party Feb. 18 at The Fox Sports Grill at Galleria Mall. (No word from T.O. on where he'll play in 2006, though.)

Among the most interesting sights of the week: a life-size statue of all-star Vince Carter made out of Lego blocks (but wearing real Nikes); hip-hop star Nelly showing off his b-ball chops by winning the Reebok celebrity slam dunk contest; and Brandon Routh, the star of next year's Superman Returns, getting minimal crowd response when introduced as a judge at the aforementioned Feb. 18 celebrity slam dunk contest, until the announcer revealed Routh had appeared in Christina Aguilera's music video for "What a Girl Wants," which evoked huge cheers.

Oh yeah. There was a game too.

The main event itself featured such celeb sightings as Jamie Foxx, Diddy, Ice Cube, 50 Cent, Julianne Moore, former president George Bush and Eva Longoria, who was cheering on her boyfriend, all-star Tony Parker. It seemed as if the NBA had put on about as frenzied an event as it could.

Unlike the authors of the article quoted above, we'd love to report the final score in what we fondly call "America's Cup on Hardwood," but it was pretty windy that night, and we're not sure anyone could actually hear the PA announcer over the snap and whish of fabric as players sailed majestically about the boards. If we discover anything in the papers, we'll let you know.

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